Gulmarg abuzz with sports activities

Army tops in Nordic Skiing

GULMARG: After curtains for 2nd Phase of 4th Khelo India Winter Game were raised, the festivities of celebrations kicked on the previous cold & serene night.

With the stage laid open, the Jammu & Kashmir Sports Council and associated departments with close coordination & synergy on first Day organized two events of Nordic Skiing one each for  Women & Men category.

The Event of Nordic Women Skiing for Sprint 1.6 KM started at the Golf Culb with supporting officials facilitating participants assigning them chest numbers and installing timers at the finishing & starting points.

Twenty Women athletes who participated  in the first game of the season  represent different states and organizations including ten from ITBP, two from Gujarat, two from Himachal Pradesh, two Ladakh and one each from Karnataka, Meghalaya, Haryana & Uttarakhand.

Bhavani Thekkada from Karnataka emerged the winner in the Nordic Sports event while Selma Soreng and Sapna of ITBP got second and third position respectively.

While the 2nd Sports event scheduled for the day for Nordic Men for Sprint 10 KM witnessed the enthusiastic participation of thirty-three players including ten from Army, nine from ITBP, five J&K, two each from Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jaharkhand, Karnataka, and one from West Bengal.

In men’s category, all three positions were taken by Army as Padma Namgail achieved first position, Mangeet second while Rameez Ahmad Paddar settled with 3rd position.

The players donning the jerseys and Skiing equipments were pushing themselves against slopes overcoming the friction made rounds along the track with focus on to scale the top position. Some of the player were fresh while others had second or third opportunity carrying with them the past experience.

Geeta Thakur, a coach of Snow Boarding from Uttarakhand representing ITBP, while speaking about the ongoing Winter Games of Khelo India said that with the improvement in the weather, players are in high spirits to display their potential & skill to take home medals, experience & resplendent memories.

Gulmarg is providing unique opportunity, which is better than other destinations, to channelize the talent of youngsters for bigger events like Olympics.

She appreciated Officers of J&K Sports Council for making all the arrangements including Transport & accommodation facilities.

Rajesh Thakur player of Nordic Skiing Sprint 10 KM, representing ITBP, who has participated in all the three Khelo India Winter Games and is also taking part today in the fourth edition. Sharing his experience Thakur says that he feels excited today as the snow accumulation is much better and the weather is also pleasant. He expressed gratitude to the Centre & UT governments for enhancing the facilities all over the destinations.

Talking about the arrangements, he showered all praise to J&K Sports Council and stated that players feel at home and the officials are entirely supporting.

Joginder Kumar, from Haryana said that the players from the state arrived two days before which provided them ample time to practice and refresh for the competitions.

He expressed that all Khelo India Winter Game unfolds vast opportunities for the young generation to make a professional career and represent nation at international level.

“This event unites Nation by Youth & Culture exchange besides helps players to understand & Know one another”, he maintained.

The games commenced amid the traditional local cultural presentation of Bandpether wielding the occasion with music and soulful essence

One of the many attractions of KIWG is the Snow Leopard Mascot, the role is being played by Adil, an employee of J&K Sports Council.

He has been enthralling the spectacle with choreographed moves for the second time in KIWG said that the Snow Leopard is commonly found in the mountains of J&K which represents agility & strength.

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