UAE : The ninth season of Odisha Cup, The World’s Largest Prabasi Odia Cricket Tournament, concluded (22nd Jan 23). A total of 12 teams took part in this cricketing extravaganza which began on 16th Oct 2023. This year’s Odisha Cup was the biggest one since the cup’s inception in 2013.
The final match was played at Sharjah English School’s cricket venue in Sharjah, UAE, between Utkal Challengers and Fujairah Odia Teams. Himanshu Das, captain of Fujairah Odia (FO), won the toss and elected to bowl first, limiting opponents Utkal Challengers (UC) to 104/9 in the allotted 20 overs. Mr. Deepak Kumar hit 23 runs off 36 balls, assisting Utkal Challengers (UC) in setting a respectable target. Mr. Birendra Panda (27 runs with balls) and Mr. Pintu Dalai’s blasting knock (17 runs in 8 balls) helped the Fujairah Odia (FO) Team achieve their goal in the 20th over. Mr. Trinath Behera of the Fujairah Odia team was adjudged ‘Man of the Match’ for taking four crucial wickets.
Over the years, the Odisha Cup has become a vital component of Odias’s lives in the United Arab Emirates. In proudly support of Odisha Hockey WorldCup 2023, the Odisha cup conducted various games for children parallelly and updated the hockey score from the commentary box. The game was played in a celebratory environment of eminent personalities and Odia families. An impressive array of Odia snacks and dishes was arranged for the players and spectators. The exhilaration of experiencing a live match in person was apparent on the faces of the fans.
According to the organizing committee, participants from all social groups and sectors are invited to participate. The event promotes sportsmanship and friendliness while integrating all Prabasi Odias residing in UAE under the umbrella of cricket.
Chief Guest Mr. Uttam Chand, consul (visa and community affairs) India, congratulated the organizing committee with his gracious presence. He commended all the participant’s and organizers’ efforts. He was pleased to see the Odisha Cup grow over the years and hoped that the 2023 edition would be the finest yet.
Mr. Manoj Kumar Mishra attended the event as a special guest. He is a prominent Indian actor and production designer best known for his work in Hindi and Odia films. Drishyam (2015), Raavan (2010), Mission Kashmir (2000), Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005), Bhaunri (2015), and Abhay (2017) are among some of his well-known movies. He encouraged Odia people to promote Odia culture globally. He was thrilled to be a part of such a large Odia event outside the nation.
Mr. Priyadarshee Panigrahi, an Odisha Cup advisor and Senior Business Management Expert, attended the event as a guest of honor. He praised the organizing committee for getting all 12 teams together now and allowing them to play cricket in a different country. He believes this is the greatest in-person meeting of Prabasi Odias in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) area since the pandemic began more than three years ago.
Mr. Sailaj Das, a senior adviser, a prominent entrepreneur in the maritime area, and a leading non-resident of Odia, one of the tournament’s main supporters, were thrilled with the turnout. He was impressed by the players’ and organizers’ devotion and commitment.
Mr. Amiya Kumar Mishra, another Odisha Cup advisor and President of Odisha Samaj UAE, was also present. He thanked all the teams and organizers for their exceptional efforts in making the Odisha Cup a success for the past nine years.
Advisors and mentor Capt. Soumya Patnaik, Mr Tushar Sahoo, Mr Akshaya Parija, Kishore Dash and Pradeep Rath congratulated the organizing committee for the tournament’s success. Senior organizers Rajat Rath, Susant Jena, Nirlipta Mohanty, Sambhram Pattanayak, Krushna Prusty, Pradyumna Sahu, and Sujit Samal energized the participants. These organizers have been affiliated with the event since its inception and have contributed to all editions.
Other core personnel of the Odisha Cup, including Chinmay Kumar Jena, Abanikanta Patro, Dev Mishra, Sujit Khatua, Syed Ali, and Amriten Chaterjee, have worked tirelessly to ensure the event’s success.
Fujairah Odia (FO) squad was presented with the Odisha Cup 2022 Winners Trophy with much applause from the vast Odia crowd. On behalf of the organizing committee, Rajat Rath and Nirlipta Mohanty committed to making the 2023 edition the largest yet and celebrating the event’s tenth anniversary by bringing in more teams and ensuring the spirit of Odia culture is promoted among the Odia community in the UAE.