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2008 Jr. Men's AsiaCup
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Where is crowd, and who is reponsible for that (7/14/2008)
The facilities in terms of infrastructure and organization is excellent but where is ther crowd. The problem is, the Gachibowli hockey stadium is about 25 km away from the city and it reflects in the stands, which are of course slopped green tops on three sides, one side is covered cases.

During the Premier Hockey League at least the organizers ESPN put in lot of efforts to provide transport to schools and sports clubs to ferry their wards, which filled in the stands.

The present tournament, Junior Asia Cup, is being organized by the Hyderabad Hockey Association, president of which is one Dinesh Reddy, who happens to the CEO of APSRTC, the transport arm of the provincial government, Andhra Pradesh. Strictly speaking there should not be any problem in repeating what the ESPN did three years, ago.

But it appears the organizing apparatus here is involved in high end stuff like opening and closing ceremonies, not bothered about basic work of spreading the game. But better opportunity than when you have eight nationals teams at your door step and get hundred of youngsters to watch!

This is where the State Association dealing hockey falters. They are obsssessed with mundane affairs, no clue whatsoever about how to make use of organizing such a maega event to the benefit of the area.

The state government has given Rs. 50 lakh, for what. Just for organizing a meet which was watched by none. In other words, when will the State of AP will produce international players of caliber.

I happened to see on Saleem Bin Khalifa, who runs the Bhistiwada Youth Sports Club – it was started inspired by the PHL in 2005.

Now he is going post to pillar in the last couple of days to get a transport so that 40 odd students of the game he trains in AC Guards area, get to see these matches.

So far his efforts did not bring any dividends. It is pity.

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