By Jagpreet Sandhu , Mohali, January 21 : Coca-Cola India, the beverage company, today rolled out the Coca-Cola Cricket Cup Under-16 school cricket tournament in partnership with Procam International. To unearth good cricketing talent from the state, the tournament will be supported by leading IPL Franchise, Kings XI Punjab who are now partners for this U-16 grassroots initiative.
The initiative was announced by Mr. Ashish Sethi, CEO, Kandhari Beverages Pvt Ltd (Franchise Bottling Partner of The Coca-Cola Company in India), Col. Arvinder Singh, COO KXI Punjab and Mr. PN Sankaran Director Operations, Procam International at the PCA Stadium in Mohali.
Speaking about the initiative, Ashish Sethi, CEO, Kandhari Beverages Pvt Ltd (Franchise Bottling Partner of The Coca-Cola Company in India) said, “Our purpose of getting into grassroots sports tournament is twofold. On one hand, it helps identify and promote young talent and gives them a well charted course to make it big in sports, on the other; it helps us get young children out into sports arenas and grounds. With changes in lifestyle, our children are not spending as much time playing as we would do in our childhood. Also sport promotes social cohesiveness and well-being and hence Coca-Cola has always taken a very active position in sports.”
The initiative is also being supported by Cricketing legend and Coca-Cola’s Happiness Ambassador, Sachin Tendulkar, who sent his best wishes for the tournament and said, “The formative years of cricket is between ages 11 to 15. That is when, cricketers start discovering their mental as well as physical skills and orient themselves towards a particular discipline of the game like batting, bowling, wicket keeping and fielding. What Coca-Cola is now doing through the Coca-Cola U-16 Cup Cricket program, is providing a similar platform to young cricketers to groom and nurture themselves for bigger challenges ahead. I congratulate them for taking a lead in such initiatives”.
The Punjab leg of the Coca-Cola Cricket Cup will involve participation from leading under-16 cricket team from schools in 6 major districts namely Chandigarh, Mohali, Amritsar, Ludhiana, Jalandhar & Patiala and in 2 minor districts Ropar and Bhatinda. The tournament will commence in February and will run for duration of approximately 30 days.
The teams and players performing will stand a chance to wins prizes at each stage post the quarter-final round. The winners & runners up of Punjab Finals will be awarded prizes worth INR 50,000 and INR 35,000 respectively. While all the teams reaching the Inter District stage will be presented with T-shirts and caps, the members of the teams that make it to the semi-finals will be presented with cricket kitbags. In-addition, there will also be man of the match awards for each match from the quarter-final stage onwards.