Bhubaneswar, July 18: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday inaugurated the Gymnastics High Performance Centre and the new Hockey High Performance Centre at the Kalinga Stadium.
The Gymnastics High Performance Centre is a joint initiative with ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel India while the Hockey High Performance Centre is in partnership with Tata Steel and Tata Trusts.
On this occasion, the Chief Minister also presented a cheque of Rs 10 lakh to Odia gymnasts Rakesh Patra and Tapan Mohanty for qualifying for the upcoming Asian Games 2023.
Speaking at the inauguration event, Patnaik said Odisha follows a partnership model for sporting excellence. With the inauguration of the new Hockey High Performance Centre and the Gymnastic High Performance Centre, Odisha’s sporting ecosystem has become even more robust, enhancing athletes’ abilities to compete and shine in both national and international competitions.
These new centres will play a pivotal role in discovering untapped talents and nurturing potential medal-winning athletes, he said.
Dedicating Gymnastics High Performance Centre to the gymnasts of India, Patnaik said, “Odisha is committed to the development of Gymnastics. I am delighted to see our state and AM/NS India come together towards the development of Gymnastics. This partnership will go a long way in creating a vibrant gymnastics ecosystem in the country and help identify and nurture young talent for the future.”
“We are extremely happy with our partnership with the Tata Group for hockey development at HPC and even grassroots centers. This will help nurture talent and contribute towards producing elite players for the national teams. We have now developed a more open and holistic sports ecosystem with excellent and modern infrastructure with an aim of helping athletes in achieving sporting excellence,” he added.
The Odisha AM/NS India Gymnastics High Performance Centre has been set up to promote the sport of gymnastics in India and transform Odisha into a national centre for gymnastics excellence. It is equipped with advanced equipment and facilities and will train and prepare both senior and grassroots level athletes.
Six athletes of the Gymnastics HPC including one in reserve have been selected to represent India in the upcoming Asian Games 2023, a testament to their talent and the quality of training provided at the Centre.
The MoU was signed in Kyoto with ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel to set up the Gymnastics HPC during the visit of the Chief Minister to Japan in April, 2023.
The inaugurated complex of the Odisha Naval Tata Hockey High Performance Centre is a residential facility for boy and girl cadets with class room, gymnasium, kitchen and dining, physiotherapy room and other multipurpose room, all housed under one roof with a practice pitch alongside.
The Hockey HPC programme that was launched in August 2019 now has hundred players in total, fifty boys and fifty girls, who have progressively increased over the years under the aegis of the expert coaches.
Since 2019, Odisha has emerged to be a hub of high performance centres in the country. Today, Odisha has high performance centres for shooting, hockey, badminton, weightlifting, athletics, sports science, swimming, football, gymnastics and a centre of excellence in sports management.
On this occasion, the Chief Minister also announced the strengthening of the partnership with Tata group and starting of new HPCs in Archery and Sports climbing. This will further help Odisha sportspersons to develop their skills in these sports disciplines. (IANS)