Kohima: President of Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and also International Hockey Federation, Narinder Batra has urged the Nagaland government to set up a hockey pitch in the state and has assured all support towards it.

Addressing the gathering during the inauguration of the Nagaland Olympic Association (NOA) six-storey office complex here on Saturday night, Batra said the state does not have any hockey pitch and requested the government to pursue one.

Batra said he would approach the Indian Hockey Federation to extend all support towards popularizing the game and also training Naga youngsters.

The IOA president said that Nagas have the natural talent in Archery and Wrestling which need to be harnessed well.

In this, he said the state government should take advantage of the natural talents that are available and produce more Olympians.

He also said IOA would request the Wrestling Federation of India to organise friendly bouts either on Kohima or Dimapur to give exposure to the wrestlers.

The IOA president also asked the state government to identify four young athletes, two each to witness the Commonwealth and Asian games which are likely to be held in July-August. This will help them get exposure to events at international platforms and share their experiences with young budding talents to promote sports in the state.

Batra said the establishment of an office of the State Olympic Association shows the seriousness of the Nagaland government towards promoting games and sports.

The NOA office complex was inaugurated by Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio in the presence of Vice President IAO & President Athletic Federation of India Adille Sumariwala, Secretary General IAO Rajeev Mehta, a host of state Cabinet ministers, Founding President of NOA Lanu Toy and Arjuna Awardee and Olympian Chekrovulii Swuro.

On the occasion, Swuro presented her Archery World Cup Gold medal won at Shanghai China in 2011 to the NOA for display.

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