Though hockey is an unpopular sport in the northeast, the Hockey India has picked up two venues in the region – Hojai in Assam and Imphal in Manipur to host the three major tournaments.
The 8th Sub-Junior National Hockey Championship 2018 (Men) will be held from January 5 to 14 in Hojai in Assam. Hockey India is organizing the tournament in Hojai in coordination with the Hockey Association of Assam.
Altogether 21 teams are scheduled to take part in the tournament in Hojai. Some of the teams have already reached the central Assam town, the organizers said.
In Imphal, 17 teams will take part in the B-Division matches of the 8th National Senior Hockey Championship 2018 from January 7 to 21. The tournament is being organized in coordination with the Manipur Hockey Association, and 17 teams have already confirmed participation.
For the first time, Hockey India has organized three major events in the northeast. “We hope to put up a good show, and promote the game in the northeast,” said P Sushila Chanu, who captained the Indian Women Hockey Team in the 2016 Olympics.
Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh has already floated the idea of setting up a Hockey Academy in Imphal. Manipur will also host the 8th Hockey India Junior Men’s National Championship in January this year.
Interestingly, Manipur has a traditional game Khong kangjei, which is very close to the game of hockey. It is also commonly known as foot hockey.