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2014 CT BBSR
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CT 2014: I cycled 24 km to watch a match (11/27/2014)
--Tazeen Qureshy
Brisk ticket sales for Champions Trophy: "I cycled 24 km to watch a hockey match"

One of the driving factors to deem a tournament as a success is the crowd factor in the stadium. As far as hockey in India is concerned, there has been seldom an instance of a full house crowd. The different methods of attraction that has been used of late including the lucky draw for spectators have failed to pull them to the stadiums.

However, when Bhubaneswar’s Kalinga Stadium was given the rights to host the Champions Trophy, Hockey India had repeatedly highlighted the crowd that gathered in the stadium during the Hockey India League was the main reason for holding the coveted tournament in the east India city instead of New Delhi.

So while the administrators are expecting the people of the Temple City to once again come and support the game, the people of Odisha also seem to adhere to their request.

undefined The sale tickets have begun and the outlet built outside the stadium has almost sold close to 2000 tickets already.

“There is still some time for the Champions Trophy to kick start, but hockey fans have already started purchasing tickets. The demand obviously is higher for India’s matches,” said one of the sellers.

Being the most popular game in the tribal pockets, the enthusiasm is on a high as people too are looking to witness the first ever international hockey match in their home state.

“When the 1982 Asian Games were held, there were very less television sets in the city and I remember cycling for about 22 kms to visit my father’s office and watch the India-Pakistan final there. I had cried a lot when my team lost 7-1. Now that an international tournament is being held in my home state, I can’t afford to miss watching it live,” says Rajendra Narayan Patnaik after purchasing five tickets for India’s matches.

“We couldn’t watch the Hockey India League as the tickets were sold out by the time we had arrived. I didn’t want to take any risk now, so I decided to purchase it before-hand.”

Besides the sale of tickets at different outlets, there are also options of purchasing it online.

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