33-day long Kodava hockey tournament begins in Napoklu

Former Indian hockey captain Mollera P Ganesh inaugurates 22nd edition of Kodava Families' Hockey Tournament at General Thimmaiah Stadium at Napoklu on Sunday.

The Kulletira Hockey Namme 2018 was flagged off at the General K S Thimmaya Stadium at Cheriyaparambu in town on Sunday.

Kodava Hockey Academy vice president Kaliyanda Nanaiah flagged off the tournament.

Former Indian hockey captain Mollera P Ganesh and Additional Advocate General Ajjikutteera Ponnanna inaugurated the event, while Kodava traditional dance added colours to the 22nd edition of Kodava family hockey tournament.

Ponnanna said the population of Kodavas is around 1.18 lakh. Kodava culture is known across the world, but there is a need to pass on the culture to the future generation along with conserving it.

‘Poor performance’

Mollera P Ganesh said, “Though Kodagu has contributed sports talent to the country, it is a tragedy that no player from Kodagu is in the Indian hockey team at present. The poor performance of the Indian hockey team in the Commonwealth Games has disheartened sports lovers.”

Padebeera Kulleti Ponnanna book was released on the occasion. Kulletira family Pattedar Kulletira Madappa presided over the programme. Utsav Samithi president Shambhu Mandappa, international athlete Baleyanda Poonaccha, Coffee Board vice president Pattada Reena Prakash were present on the occasion.

Ummathat by West Kolakeri Povvodi Yuvathi Mandali, Bolakat by Bhagavathi Yuvaka Sangha and Kolat by Kaveri College students enthralled the audience.

Exhibition match

A large number of hockey lovers were present. After the inauguration, an exhibition match was held between Indian Olympian team led by Prabhujoth Singh and the Coorg International team led by V S Vinay. The Indian Olympian team won by 1-0, with Deepak Takur hitting a goal for Indian Olympian.

The last minutes of the match were affected due to rainfall. The league-level matches will start on Monday.

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