New Delhi: The International Hockey Federation (FIH) president, Narinder Batra, said Odisha is going to be the Sports Hub of India like Mumbai as Financial Hub and Bangaluru as IT Hub while praising the state  government for readying the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar for the Hockey World Cup before the schedule time.

Stating that Odisha had successfully hosted the Asian Athletics Championships, Batra said that Bhubaneswar is going to be the Sports Hub  of India. “The Odisha government is showing great support. For this hockey World Cup, they have moved very quickly in finding solutions to different issues in terms of getting all the facilities in place at the right time.”

As the president of  Indian Olympic Association (IOA), he said that the state should build a High Performance Centre for all sporting disciplines.

“The Kalinga Stadium in Odisha capital, with an increased crowd capacity of 15,000, will be almost ready by July, months before it hosts the Hockey World Cup beginning on November 28”, said Batra in the sidelines of an event to announce Odisha’s sponsorship association with the national men’s and women’s hockey teams. “New turfs will be laid at both the grounds inside the stadium. And the work will be completed by July,” he added.

The stadium capacity is being doubled from 7,500 earlier. The state government is also making arrangement of  accommodation for around 1000 players and officials from the participating countries.

The FIH President also clarified that Pakistan will participate in the World Cup. “The process and protocol in terms of coming for the tournament in India is same for every country,” Batra said.