‘Seating’ Capacity Of Birsa Munda Stadium Not Found Anywhere In World: FIH President

Rourkela: International Hockey Federation (FIH) president Tayyab Ikram was all praise for the efforts that the Odisha government has put in to organise successive World Cup.

Speaking to media persons at the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela on Sunday, Tayyab appreciated the massive scale of this World Cup. “Let me congratulate and express my sincere gratitude to Odisha government, government of India, leadership of Odisha government, especially Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for his dynamic leadership. Global hockey is blessed that he prioritised the sport in Odisha and put a lot of investment,” he said.

Tayyab said Odisha is not only building the infrastructure, but also sourcing those to have an impact on the community. “It is not only a competition, not just a mega event. It is transforming the lives of local community which I felt during the opening ceremony and my last two days in Rourkela. Even in non-India matches, the turnout at the stadium was great and that made me realise what hockey could do,” he added.

He felt it was not the end result of a match, but the end result of sustainable development and the way hockey was transforming different communities that matters.

Tayyab said seating capacity at Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium had been raised from 20,000 to 21,800 seats. “You don’t have this ‘seating’ capacity anywhere in the world. I have not seen such infrastructure, such facilities for a tournament,” he added.

Talking about future of hockey in Odisha, the FIH president said there was a proposal from Hockey India about another tournament and they will seriously consider it.

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