Muscat: The United Thalassery Sports Club (UTSC), who in association with the Oman Hockey Association (OHA), is gearing up to organise the Starcare Cup Gulf Hockey Fiesta at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex on February 26, have got a shot in the arm with Asian Hockey Federation (AHF) under the International Hockey Federation (FIH) regulations formally recognising this regional venture.
UTSC, who had informed the AHF through OHA about the forthcoming event, received this encouraging reply from 'Dato' Tayyab Ikram, Chief Executive of Asian Hockey Federation (AHF).
In a confirmation letter to Javis Ahmed, the secretary of UTSC, Tayyib Ikram had written: "Reference to your request and application dated 1st February 2016 to hold the UTSC Gulf Hockey Fiesta 2016... on behallf of the AHF I am pleased to formally sanction this tournament under the FIH regulations on Sanctioned and Unsanctioned Events"
Reacting to the news, UTSC official Mohammed Raffi said: "The Hockey Fiesta is definitely going to be the topper among all events conducted so far. The chief guest himself India goalkeeper Parattu Raveendran Sreejesh is a star attraction.
"As an icing on the cake, the tournament has got recognition and sanction from the most prestigious Asian Hockey Federation. This is certainly a moment of joy.
"We are very sincerely grateful to S.A.S Naqvi for supporting us to achieve this. We express our heartfelt gratitude to Dato Tayab Ikram. We also thank Oman Hockey Association for the tremendous back up support they have been giving us always. Looking forward for a tremendous tournament."
The event has attracted hockey teams of all GCC countries. Teams from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and the UAE will be seen in action.