Squash facility inaugurated at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium

A six-court squash facility was inaugurated by the Union External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishankar, in the presence of the Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Union External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar (left) and Sports Minister Anurag Thakur (right) at the inauguration of the squash facility at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday.   -  KAMESH SRINIVASAN

A six-court squash facility was inaugurated by the Union External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishankar, in the presence of the Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here on Wednesday.

‘’There is no age limit for sports. You all can play squash’’, said Dr. Jaishankar, addressing a big gathering of sports persons and coaches, quoting his example of having started with the game when he was 24.

‘’I have been playing squash for the last 44 years’’, said Dr. Jaishankar, emphasising that sports had the unique ability of developing a competitive mindset.

The Sports Minister assured that the five-crore facility built in less than two years time would also have tournaments so as to develop the game further among the youth.

Stressing that more facilities would mean opportunities for more players, the Sports Minister said that the focus was to strengthen Indian sports in every possible way.

With change rooms, toilets, spectator gallery, and office space, the squash arena is a compact self-sufficient facility that adds to the other games at the vast and historic venue, which hosted the inaugural Asian Games in 1951.

Hockey, swimming, tennis and kabaddi are the other games at the venue near India Gate. The place used to develop many cricket players of international quality, under the able guidance of Dronacharya awardee Gurcharan Singh and later MP Singh, but has ceased to be a cricket centre for some time.

‘’My satisfaction would be to come and see others playing on these courts’’, said Dr. Jaishankar, who had originally visualised the idea of having a squash facility in the heart of Delhi for everyone. The sports minister jumped on the idea and made it a reality in quick time.

There is a distinct possibility that the place could soon run a squash academy.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :