Odisha CM launches major projects for cricket development in State

Bhubaneswar: In a major boost for cricket development in Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today announced the redevelopment of historic Barabati Cricket Stadium and laid the foundation stone for the redevelopment of VSS cricket stadium in Sambalpur.

The CM said that Barabati stadium will be redeveloped into a world-class sports complex with all the modern facilities, in partnership with BCCI, OCA, and Corporates. At the same time, considering the legacy of the stadium, the iconic clock tower will be conserved as a heritage structure. VSS stadium in Sambalpur will be expanded and developed with the best cricket facilities for cricketers in the region.

The CM also inaugurated cricket facilities at Berhampur Sports Complex, Shree Jagannath Cricket Stadium and Women’s Cricket Academy, Puri, Sports Complex, Jajpur, ⁠Cricket Ground, Jharsuguda, and 41 cricket Academies developed across the State by Odisha Cricket Association (OCA). He announced that the stadium in Berhampur will be named Mahatma Gandhi Cricket Stadium, in memory of Gandhiji’s visit to this place during the Freedom movement.

The CM also announced that an Integrated Sports complex will be created at Sitalapalli, Berhampur which will include facilities for athletics, football, cricket, indoor stadium etc to cater to the needs of the sportspersons in the region.

The CM inaugurated Ganjam Weightlifting Academy along with the 200-seated hostel making it the largest weightlifting training facility in the country. He said it’s a tribute to the popularity of weightlifting in Ganjam, which produced so many weightlifters.

Several sports infrastructures in Jajpur namely Kusuma Complex Swimming Pool, Hockey Training Centre, a multipurpose indoor stadium, athletic track, football ground etc were inaugurated. While foundation stone was laid for the Rugby ground and cricket grounds along with the hostel.

On this occasion, the CM also laid the foundation stone for Integrated Sports Complexes at Bargarh and Dhenkanal, which include various facilities like athletic tracks, swimming pools, football grounds, cricket grounds etc.

The CM said that the focus on Cricket by the State government and OCA will help create a good ecosystem for the emergence of champions from the State in the coming years. He further said that sports are a priority area for the government to enable youth empowerment and Odisha is now recognised as a major destination for sports in the country. He hoped that all the sports infrastructure and training facilities being created would attract more children towards sports.

The program was conducted across 50 venues over video conferencing and a large number of Cricketers, sports persons participated in the program.

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