Mumbai, Oct 6 (UNI) Bharat Petroleum (BPCL) and Shivshakti are all set to defend their titles in the 39th edition of the Shivneri Krida Mandal Kabaddi Mahotsav commencing from October 12 at the Bhavani Mata Kridangan, Dadar (East).
The season's opener in Kabaddi will witness prominent outfits like Mahindra&Mahindra, Central Railway, Western Railway, Maharashtra State Police, Mumbai Port Trust and Income Tax vying for the RajaRam Sheth Lad Gold Cup (professional teams, men).
In the women's tournament for the Radha Lad Gold Cup, Shivshakti the holders will be challenged by Amar Hind Mandal (runners-up), Vishwa Shanti and Ankur Sports Club, it was announced at a press conference here today.
The festival will also feature teams from division A for the Mohan Naik Gold Cup. This is the only competition where collegiate teams get an opportunity to participate. The teams will be divided in three divisions according to their merit and will play for the URL Foundation Cup. The festival has been organized by the Shivneri Seva Mandal and the prize money of Rs 80,000 is being sponsored by the URL Foundation.
Speaking at the press conference, Shiv Kumar Lad of URL Foundation said, ''We have increased the prize money this year and will continue to do so in the years to follow. Our aim is to make this tournament a big prize money event for Mumbai teams in the near future.'' Besides cash awards for the teams, there are individual prizes for the best raider, best catcher, best all-rounder from the respective sections.
The organizers informed that seating arrangements for 5,000 spectators have been made and accordingly temporary stands have been erected. The tournament will be played under flood lights to facilitate the spectator interest, it was added at the conference.