Bhubaneshwar: After a good start with the inaugural girls program of 30 trainee cadets capacity, Naval Tata Hockey Academy Odisha (NTHAO), the states Hockey High Performance Centre (HPC) that was launched a year ago in Kalinga Stadium, is all set to induct 30 boys in the coming months.
This will strengthen its program across its talent pathway to bridge the gap between grassroots to an elite HPC and provide more opportunities to young and promising hockey players from the state and pan India who can then pursue their dream sport, excel at their game and bring laurels for the country.
“The HPC has ambitious program to take hockey skills from its existing 10 grassroots centres & 3 regional development centres (Bhubaneswar, Panposh & Sundergarh) to elite level over the next 3-5 years. The boys program will have 30 resident cadets from U -17,” Odisha Sports Minister Tusharkanti Behera said.
“We are seeing positive results in the girls and are confident that the HPC will be able to provide similar highly focused and professional training to the Boys too. They all are young, skilful and have a natural flair for hockey. We will evaluate the players individually at the HPC, and match their skills with appropriate training at the world-class facilities here in Bhubaneswar. Training early at a synthetic turf vis-a-vis ongGrass pitch grounds will benefit these players immensely.”
Most of these young talents from the state are inspired by their heroes in the Sport who hail from in and around their region, including hockey legend Dilip Tirkey, Lazarus Barla, Birendra Lakra, Amit Rohidas to name a few and aspire to be like them and make the country proud at international levels.
“We hope to maintain same 60-40 per cent focus from state and Pan India unless we have more talent coming in from the state of Odisha, in which case the percentage mix can vary,” Rajiv Seth, Project Director, NTHAO, said.