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Men’s World Cup of Hockey in 2023: Birsa Munda Stadium hosts the first international match

The 21,000-seat arena, named for an Indian tribal freedom fighter, is said to be the largest hockey arena in the world.

The magnificent Birsa Munda stadium hosted England and Wales’ men’s World Cup match on Friday, igniting a hockey fever in the nation’s cradle.

The 21,000-seat stadium named after an Indian tribal freedom fighter was used for the Pool D match in accordance with state custom. It is said that the stadium is the largest hockey arena in the world.

The Sundergarh region of Odisha, where Rourkela is the largest city, is regarded as the cradle of Indian hockey because it has produced more than 60 international players—men and women—including captains like Dilip Tirkey, the current president of Hockey India.

It was once believed that Sansarpur, Punjab, was the birthplace of Indian hockey; However, it has recently decreased.

“I’ve been to games at the Kalinga Stadium, and now I’m going to the Birsa Munda stadium, our pride,” the participant stated. For India’s first international match at the new stadium, which was between England and Wales at 5 p.m., one Rourkela supporter stated, “I want to be among those who watch the first match at this stadium, so I am going to watch England vs. Wales and then the India-Spain match.” “This region has produced so many Indian players and done so much for the game in the country,” stated Hemanta Das, who is from Jharsuguda, nearly 150

World Cup-related artwork could be found all over the city on billboards and roadside walls. The state government has set up three fan parks in addition to the Puri Beach, Birsa Munda, and Kalinga Stadiums. These fan parks are referred to as Olly Land in honor of the World Cup’s official mascot, the endangered Olive Ridley sea turtle. Fans can live stream the games on their large screens.

The organizers of the sale say that all twenty matches sold out in a week. At least two-thirds of the stadium was packed when England played Wales.

The Birsa Munda stadium was constructed in a record 15 months to accommodate World Cup games. The stadium will host twenty of the World Cup’s 44 matches; The Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, which has hosted the World Cup twice in a row, will host the remaining 24 matches, including the semifinals and final. The 200-crore Birsa Munda stadium was built on 35 acres within the 120-acre campus of the Biju Patnaik University of Technology on the outskirts of Rourkela.

It is a one-of-a-kind stadium with a World Cup village, an 80 million rupee hotel with more than 200 rooms for at least eight teams, and world-class facilities managed by the Taj Group. A tunnel connects the dressing room and practice field across the street, as well as a separate pool and fitness center.

The coaches and players of all 16 teams have nothing but admiration for the stadium, even though it had never previously hosted any senior international events prior to the World Cup. “The facilities here are fantastic, and the stadium as a whole is breathtaking.” When we trained there four or five times, it was fantastic. “It’s the same as at the Kalinga Stadium,” Spain captain Alvaro Iglesias stated. The cutting-edge location surprised India coach Graham Reid.

“It’s amazing and the facilities are fantastic. The transformations that have occurred over the past 15 months are truly remarkable. Living in the World Cup village has been amazing since December 27. He stated, “I like the pitch, and we are getting used to it.”

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