In order to lift the standard of women's hockey, the country's first women's academy was launched in Jalandhar on Thursday.
"The Mata Chanan Kaur Dhanoa women's hockey academy is the result of an initiative by Harjinder Singh Dhanoa, who has dedicated it to the memory of his mother," former India captain Pargat Singh told reporters.
Former India women's captain and Arjuna awardee Rajbir Kaur will be the chief coach at the academy.
Coaching will be imparted to players in three age groups -- 14 to 17, 17 to 19 and 19 to 21 years, Pargat Singh said, adding that 54 players, 18 in each group, have been selected after three days of intensive trials.
The selected girls will be provided free boarding, lodging, kits, training, medical facilities and education, he said.
Pargat Singh, who is also director of the academy, said the academy will field a team in major domestic tournaments and provide international exposure to the players.