The Tamil Nadu leg of the 'Pass the Ball' Trophy Tour, a crucial part of the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 build-up campaign, came to a successful conclusion on Monday.
Hockey enthusiasts in Tamil Nadu have shown tremendous support, making it a resounding success.
Adding to the excitement for Hockey fans in Tamil Nadu, the state’s Hon'ble Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development, Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin, has announced the establishment of fan parks in every district. These dedicated fan parks will provide the people of the state with an excellent platform to showcase their unwavering passion and love for Hockey, further amplifying the already overwhelming response.
The Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023, set to be held from August 3rd to 12th at the iconic Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Egmore, Chennai, promises to be an unforgettable extravaganza, as teams from across the continent converge to compete for glory, pride, and the coveted championship title.
Interestingly, the addition of lively fan parks will offer the fans to attend the live screenings of the tournament’s matches on big screens thus providing a unifying platform for fans to cheer on their beloved teams together.
The Additional Chief Secretary to Tamil Nadu Government, Thiru Atulya Misra, praised the initiative and stated, “I applaud Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin, Hon'ble Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development, for his visionary decision to establish Live Fan Zones across all districts of Tamil Nadu during the Asian Champions Trophy.
“The government, under his exceptional leadership, aims to create a thrilling atmosphere for hockey fans and promote the sport throughout the state.”
He also explained the concept of Fan Parks and said, “In collaboration with the SDAT (Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu) and Hockey India, LED screens with captivating branding will be set up in each district's Fan Zone, where the matches will be telecasted live for the enthusiastic audience.
“Also, the District Collectors have been entrusted with identifying suitable locations, such as parks, bus stands, malls, and other prominent areas that attract a large public gathering, in their respective district headquarters or other significant towns for the creation of these Live Fan Zones.”
“The tournament schedule includes three matches daily at 4:00 PM, 6:15 PM, and 8:30 PM during the group stage, with the last match of the day being India's thrilling encounter.
“With such a well-thought-out initiative, we are confident that the establishment of Live Fan Zones will not only bring joy to hockey enthusiasts but also leave an indelible mark on Tamil Nadu's sports landscape, nurturing a generation of dedicated athletes and passionate sports enthusiasts," he added.
Praising the decision of having fan parks in all the districts of Tamil Nadu, Hockey India President Padma Shri Dilip Kumar Tirkey said, "We are immensely pleased with the visionary decision of Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin, Hon'ble Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development, Tamil Nadu, to establish fan parks in every district of the state for the Asian Champions Trophy.
“This remarkable initiative will undoubtedly fuel the passion for hockey across the region, bringing communities together and fostering a new era of sporting excellence.”
Hockey India Secretary General Shri Bhola Nath Singh also echoed the same sentiments and said, "We extend our sincere appreciation to Tamil Nadu State Government for their commendable step in establishing fan parks in every district of the state for the tournament. This thoughtful decision will not only ignite a new wave of enthusiasm for hockey but also promote the sport at the grassroots level and foster a vibrant sporting culture in Tamil Nadu.”
Also, Shri Sekar J Manoharan, President of the Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu, expressed his views on the initiative and said, "We extend our sincere appreciation to Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin, Hon'ble Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development, Tamil Nadu, for his visionary step in establishing fan parks in every district of the state for the Asian Champions Trophy.
"We believe this extraordinary step will kindle the passion for hockey amongst our people, paving the way for a promising future for the sport in Tamil Nadu."
Meanwhile, Prasanna, who hails from Ramanathapuram District and is an aspiring hockey player, said that he is delighted to have a fan park in his district and thanked government officials for installing the same. Also, Kumar, who is the secretary of the Hockey Unit of Dharmapuri, termed the initiative ‘wonderful’ and said that fan parks will allow the people to enjoy the stadium-like atmosphere.
Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 will be telecast live on Star Sports and Fancode. It will also be live streamed on watch.hockey for viewing outside of India.