Following the success of the Khelo India Women's Hockey League (U-21) held over three phases in New Delhi and Lucknow earlier this year, a similar league for U-16 girls is scheduled to start on August 16 at the Major Dhyanchand Stadium in the national capital.
As per a press release from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Phase 1 of the 1st Khelo India Women's Hockey League (U-16) is scheduled from August 16 to 23 where a total of 16 teams from across the country are participating. A total of 56 matches will be played in Phase 1 and over 300 players will compete. The Sports Authority of India has allocated a total of Rs 53.72 lakhs for 3 phases of the competition, which includes Prize money of Rs 15.5 lakh.
'It is another great step taken by the Khelo India and Hockey India by organising 1st Khelo India Women's Hockey League Under -16, after completion of the 1st Khelo India Women's Hockey League U-21 recently," mentioned Piyush Kumar Dubey, former coach, Indian men's hockey team.
"In the current scenario, there are a lot of competition/tournament exposures are in place only for the Senior category but especially in Women Hockey at Junior and Sub Junior level, they do not have such numbers of tournaments and competition where they can sharpen, assess their training and capabilities. That's why initiating such Khelo India League at Sub-junior level is definitely going to play a major role in future in terms of athletes performance and overall development and also make them learn how to handle such competition pressures," Dubey added.
The matches are scheduled to start at 6:30 am each day with the final match scheduled at 5 pm. August 19 is kept as the rest day.
Phase 1 and 2 of the Khelo India Women's Hockey League (U-16) will be in a round-robin format. The final ranking of teams will be determined after the completion of the first 2 phases. Phase 3 will consist of classification matches where each team will play a minimum of 3 matches.
The Khelo India Women's Hockey League (U-16) is yet another endeavour by the Khelo India's Sports for Women component, which takes the most necessary steps to power more female participation in a wide array of sports competitions. The support extends to not only giving grants but also helping in the proper organization and execution of the events. (ANI)