CYG will boost sports tourism: Kalamdi

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Pune, May 15 (UNI) Terming the hosting of the 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games ''a blessing in disguise'' Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president and MP Suresh Kalmadi today said the Games will give boost to sports tourism in the city.

Speaking during a felicitation function here, the former Poona District Amateur Athletic Association (PDAAA) president expressed confidence that Pune will be transformed into a top class sports city as it boasts of the most modern infrastructure facilities created for the 2008 CYG. It will also lead to the development of city's roads, public transport and the air connectivity to various parts of the globe. It will also boost hospitality industry, with more than 15 five star hotels expressing interest in starting their operations, creating job opportunities for the youths in the near future.

He said after the conclusion of the Games, the venue could be used for hosting various world and Asian championships like the World Junior Badminton championship, the World Junior Circuit Table Tennis, the World Railway Games, the Asian Athletic Championship and the Asian Weightlifting Championships.

The ultra-modern sports facilities created at the venue will be further utilised in hosting world-class sports extravaganza, Kalmadi said.

The Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex is the only venue where all the nine disciplines of sports for the 2008 CYG will be organised.

Apart from sportspersons and officials, the city will be brimming with tourists from all over the globe, which will flourish the economy of the local people, he added.

Earlier, Kalmadi felicitated three young athletes -- Asian Cross Country gold medalist Swati Gadhve, Maharashtra captain Sayali Dravid and prodigy Pranita Ghate, who will shortly leave for Edinburgh for advance training-cum-coaching. The trio were awarded a scholarship of Rs 25,000 each on the occasion.

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