Scouting and Nurturing talented players from grassroots is our key focus: Odisha Sports Minister

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Bhubaneswar: A meeting was held under the chairmanship of Shri Tusharkanti Behera, Hon’ble Minister, Sports & YS, to apprise the leadership of the various Odisha State Sports Associations with the plan for Sports Development in the State.

Secretary Sports, Shri Vishal K Dev and Director Sports, Shri R Vineel Krishna, Sports & YS Department gave an overview of the key drivers of Sports development in the State and shared the vision towards creation of a strong progression pathway for Sportspersons in Odisha. The key features of the draft Sports Policy for the State were also presented in the meeting.

The meeting was attended by various Sports Associations including, Odisha Olympics Association, Football Association of Odisha, Hockey Odisha, Odisha Athletics Association. Padma Shri Dr. Dilip Tirkey, Chairman, Hockey Promotion Council Odisha also participated in this discussion.
The presentation was well received by the attending members. They made suggestions and requests towards complementing the Department’s efforts in Sports Development which were acknowledged and will be considered for further actions.

Hon’ble Minister for Sports and Youth Services, Odisha, Shri Tusharkanti Behera chaired the meeting and in his concluding remarks thanked the representatives of the State Sports Association and said, ” We value your views and proposals and look forward to working closely with you all in strengthening the Sports ecosystem of the State. The existing Sports Hostels will be strengthened and trainees above 18 years of age will be retained on the basis of their performance assessment. We are aiming for 2024 and 2028 where Odia players can shine and we will be scouting across all levels to identify, nurture and groom talented players.
We also welcome you to share proposals in drafting a robust Sports Policy that will further the development of Sports in the State.”
The Sports Hostels will be developed into Sports Academies which will also include day coaching programs so as to provide competitive training to residential as well as non-residential sportspersons. We will engage expert coaches, technical partners, staff, and include Sports Science, diet and training programme to benefit them all, he added.

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