CHENNAI: In a bid to take international hockey events to different cities across the country, Hockey India announced Chennai, Tamil Nadu as the venue for the forthcoming Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023.
This will be the seventh edition of the coveted tournament and it is scheduled to be held from August 3 to August 12 serving as a precursor to the Hangzhou Asian Games in September where teams will vie to win Gold and qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. Chennai last hosted an international hockey event in 2007 when the prestigious Asia Cup was held and the venue proved to be lucky for the home team who clinched the title beating Korea 7-2 in the Final.
The Indian men's team had won this title in the inaugural edition held in 2011 and beat Pakistan in the Final to win the Title in 2016. In the following edition in 2018, India were joint winners with Pakistan after rain affected the proceedings of the Final held in Muscat.
Welcoming the participating teams to Tamil Nadu, Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin said, "It is indeed a great pleasure and honour to host the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 in Chennai, Tamil Nadu which was once the capital of hockey in South India with many reputed domestic and international events being held here. I am very delighted to see the sport being revived in the state with many youngsters coming up the ranks including recent sensation in the Indian team S Karthi who is from Tamil Nadu. I believe hosting the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 here will further revive the sport in the region and watching top teams in Asia will also inspire the younger generation to take up hockey as a career. The Tamil Nadu government under the leadership of Hon'ble Chief Minister Thiru MK Stalin extends all the support required to make this event a grand success."
Expressing his gratitude to HMinister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development Thiru Udhayanidhi Stalin and thanking AHF for the opportunity to host the prestigious Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023, Padma Shri Dr Dilip Tirkey, President of Hockey India said, "On behalf of Hockey India, I thank Shri Udhayanidhi Stalin, Hon'ble Minister of Youth Welfare and Sports Development for his support in hosting this prestigious tournament in Chennai. I had the honour of interacting with him during the FIH Odisha Hockey Men's World Cup Bhubaneswar-Rourkela and it was very encouraging to see his enthusiasm and passion for hockey. I also thank AHF for this opportunity. It has been a while since we had all the top teams in Asia come to India and participate here. I have very fond memories of playing in Chennai and we hope they will all turn up in large numbers to support the participating teams."
Adding to the President's views, Secretary General of Hockey India Shri Bhola Nath Singh said, "Hockey India officials have already visited the venue in Chennai and have taken note of the on-going preparations for the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023. Tamil Nadu in the past decade has hosted many important Hockey India National Championships across various age-groups and we were keen on taking international hockey matches to other states in the country. I am sure with the support of all the stake holders, we will have a successful and memorable event."
Mr. I Paranthaman, MLA Egmore, Dr Atulya Misra, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary to Government, Youth Welfare and Sports Development, Government of Tamil Nadu, Shri J. Meghanatha Reddy, IAS, Chief Executive Officer / Member Secretary, SDAT & Ex-Officio Director, Youth Affair Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu, and Shri Sekar J Manoharan, Treasurer of Hockey India and President Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu were also present during the announcement of the Hero Asian Champions Trophy 2023 in Chennai and will be co-coordinating with the Hockey India for conduct of the tournament.