Odisha will host the FIH Junior Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup at the iconic Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik made the major announcement on Thursday.
The trophy and logo of the Junior Men's Hockey World Cup was unveiled at the Loka Seva Bhawan in Bhubaneswar.
As per the announcement, the FIH Junior Men’s Hockey Junior World Cup will be played at Kalinga Stadium from November 24 to December 5, 2021. “Recently, the Hockey India had approached us to support them for the Men’s Junior World Cup which is going to be held in two months’ time. It is very short notice to make arrangements for such an event, especially during Covid-19 pandemic situation. Since the country’s prestige is at stake, we readily agreed to support,” said Patnaik.
According to Patnaik, “The Indian Junior team had won the cup and as the reigning champions, I am sure that our team will take advantage of the home ground and emerge victorious again.”
The Chief Minister said that Hockey holds special place amongst sports in Odisha. Players from the State have led the country in many international tournaments. Over the last decade, Odisha is with hockey India for the development of hockey. The State has been sponsoring the national hockey teams since 2018 and hosted major tournaments including the Hockey World Cup, he said.
“All these efforts led to the historic success of the men’s and women’s hockey teams at Tokyo Olympics. These achievements brought great joy to people across the country. It was clear that the glory of Indian hockey is back. The Hockey World Cup in January 2023 will be a landmark event and provide further momentum for development of hockey in the country. Odisha will continue to be part of the journey of Indian Hockey. We have already announced to support teams for another 10 years,” Patnaik added.
International Hockey Federation (FIH) President, Narindra Batra said, “Odisha has earned global recognition and risen as sports hub to become the preferred partners for the federations. It is certainly a momentous occasion for the Hockey Federation."
"The Odisha government organised 2018 Men’s World Cup and set the benchmark for rest of the world. It also showcased Odisha and India’s enormous capabilities to host mega events. The iconic Kalinga Stadium has emerged as a best venue for world hockey tournaments. I am confident with the new Rourkela stadium, which is under construction, will take hockey to new heights,” said Batra.
(Edited By Ramakant Biswas)