The Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai has undergone a significant upgrade, including the installation of the Poligras Paris GT zero hockey turf, ahead of the start of the highly-anticipated Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023. The Hon’ble Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Shri M. K. Stalin, inaugurated the brand new turf today in a grand ceremony in the esteemed presence of the Hon’ble Minister for Youth Welfare and Sports Development Department of Tamil Nadu, Shri Udhayanidhi Stalin.
The Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 will also serve as a preparatory event for the all-important Hangzhou Asian Games. India, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Japan, and China will compete for the coveted Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 from 3rd August to 12th August.
The intricately designed Hockey Zero turf is made with 80 percent sugarcane and manufactured with green energy. The turf requires less water and hence has been designed to make it friendly for the environment by preventing. The turf was also successfully used during the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023 Bhubaneswar-Rourkela which was held earlier this year in January. The same turf will also be used for the 2024 Paris Olympics and the FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup 2026.
Speaking on the occasion Hon’ble Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Shri M.K.Stalin said, “With the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 set to begin shortly, I extend a very warm welcome to all the participating teams to our beautiful city. I am very delighted today to inaugurate a first-of-its-kind environment friendly hockey turf. The Department of Youth Welfare and Sports Development of Tamil Nadu’s decision to opt for the carbon zero turf showcases our government’s dedication towards the preservation of the environment, while also providing the best facilities for our athletes. I congratulate all the officials who have tirelessly worked towards hosting a successful tournament and wish all the teams the very best.”
“It is a great honour that Chennai is hosting the Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 and the cherry on the cake is the fact that we are doing so on a carbon zero turf. This is a testament to the state’s commitment towards sports and sports infrastructure. With this initiative, we want to continue supporting and developing the youth of this state, “the Hon’ble Minister for Youth Welfare and Sports Development of Tamil Nadu Shri Udhayanidhi Stalin weighed in.
Speaking at the inauguration of the pitch, Hockey India President Padma Shri Dr. Dilip Tirkey said, “We are delighted to host the prestigious Hero Asian Champions Trophy Chennai 2023 on carbon-free hockey turf. Apart from being environmentally-friendly, the turf will also provide a chance for the top nations in Asia to compete for the trophy on the best infrastructure available. We are confident that players from all the participating nations will enjoy playing on the newly laid turf and will be delighted to be a part of the movement towards preservation of the environment.”
Hockey India Treasurer Shri Sekar J Manoharan said: “We at Hockey India have always been invested towards preserving the environment. We are delighted that the magnificent Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium in Chennai is hosting the prestigious tournament on the newly-laid carbon-free turf. We express our gratitude to the Tamil Nadu government for supporting the cause and also congratulate them on the new turf. We are confident all the participating nations will be delighted with the turf and enjoy playing on the new pitch.”
The event was also graced by Dr. Atulya Mishra, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary to Government, Youth Welfare and Sports Development Department, Thiru J. Meghanatha Reddy, IAS, Member Secretary, Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu and Hockey India Executive Director Cdr R.K. Srivastava.
Notably, the West Stand at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium has been named Kalaignar Pavillion after the Former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, M. Karunanidhi. He was popularly referred to as Kalaignar and Mutthamizh Arignar for his contributions to Tamil literature.