Franchise League to help create new players: Safwan Sobhan
- October 1, 2022
Bashundhara Group Vice-Chairman and Franchise Hockey Tournament Committee Chairman Safwan Sobhan Tasvir said on Friday that their objective to organise the first hockey franchise league in the country is to create new players and improve the national team’s position in the world rankings.
“The beginning is outstanding. We are very optimistic about Hockey Champions Trophy,” he told reporters after an inaugural programme at Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium in the capital on Friday.“Bangladesh are the 27th in the hockey world ranking. We are not that far off if we keep developing our team, coaching staff, the federation itself… We will always be behind hockey. Our family is sports lovers. We will always be with the sports cricket, football and everything. I want to see Bangladesh hockey in 1 to 10 positions in world rankings within the next five years,” he added.
The country’s first franchise hockey league ‘Hockey Champions Trophy Bangladesh 2022’, organised by Bashundhara Group’s sister concern ACE, kicked off through a colorful programme.
Caption: Bangladesh Hockey Federation President and Chief of the Air Staff of Bangladesh Air Force Air Chief Marshal Sheikh Abdul Hannan (third left) and Bashundhara Group Vice-Chairman and Franchise Hockey Tournament Committee Chairman Safwan Sobhan Tasvir (second left) pose for a photo while witnessing the opening match of the country’s first franchise hockey league ‘Hockey Champions Trophy Bangladesh 2022’ between ACME Chattogram and Saif Power Group Khulna at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium in the capital on Friday. Photo: Reaz Ahmed Sumon.
Bangladesh Hockey Federation President and Chief of the Air Staff of Bangladesh Air Force Air Chief Marshal Sheikh Abdul Hannan inaugurated the programme as the chief guest while Bashundhara Group Vice-Chairman and T-Sports Chairman-cum-Managing Director Safwan Sobhan Tasvir was present as the special guest.
Safwan Sobhan also said that they had a long-term plan with this franchise league.“We are in talks with the federation to do more. Actually we approached the federation first and generated this idea. They (federation) took it very positively. Now ideas are generating every day. After this tournament we will again sit with the federation and find out more ways to do better for the players, for the game and to arrange these things in an organized manner in future. We have the scope to increase teams, take decisions about it after this league,” he added.
The Bashundhara Group Vice-Chairman further said that they had a plan to arrange these competitions at Bashundhara Sports Complex in future.
“Of course, we will arrange these big tournaments at our sports complex, that is in our plan. We have built a world-class infrastructure. Once we get accreditation from the different federations, boards around the world we are optimistic to bring those sports to Bangladesh. It will brand Bangladesh on the world stage, it will be a big achievement for us,” he further added.
Safwan Sobhan also urged the government, sponsors and other stakeholders to come forward to support the country’s hockey.
“We have a longtime plan with it. If the government provides enough infrastructure, then, of course, there is a possibility…. If infrastructure is available everywhere in Bangladesh, then we can do it. We all have to work together for it — government, private sector, sponsors. It is not possible for Bashundhara Group, ACE and T Sports to do it alone. If all stakeholders work together, we can arrange competitions abroad also,” he ended.
Meanwhile, a colorful inaugural function was held on the day. Bangladesh Hockey Federation President Sheikh Abdul Hannan thanked the organizers, stakeholders, players, coaches, referees and officials for taking part in the country’s first franchise league.
In the day’s first match, ACME Chattogram beat Saif Power Group Khulna by 3-2 goals. ACME’s Devindar Walmiki scored two goals in the 25th and 38th minutes and Florian Elvis Sperling added one in the 53rd minute while Saif’s Tanzim Ahmed and Khorshedur Rahman netted one each in the 34th and 59th minutes.