Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir has come to the rescue of Indian Ice Hockey Team as he has donated Rs. 4 Lakhs to help them prepare for an Asian-level tournament in Kuwait. This comes after the Ice Hockey Association of India’s (IHAI) desperate call for funds.
It is reported that Gambhir was pained to see the Indian Ice Hockey Team not getting any funds for the IIHF Ice Hockey Challenge Cup of Asia Division I in Kuwait from April 18-24 and hence took it as ‘moral responsibility’ to fund the team.
The cricketer, who came to know about the issue via the social media, asked the team of his ‘Gautam Gambhir Foundation’ to assure the Indian Ice Hockey team of all the help they needed.
“It’s the last thing to happen for a sportsperson that he cannot represent his country for the lack of funds. It’s the worst thing. After all, they will be called Team India irrespective of the sport they represent,” said Gambhir while handing over a Rs 4 lakh cheque to the ice hockey team captain Tsewang Gyaltson.
He added, “For any sportsman, it’s a great privilege to support any other sport, especially ice hockey which is not really popular in India. Hope they do well with this support and bring laurels to the country.”
Gambhir said big sports like hockey, football and basketball are not to be short on takers with big corporates backing them.
“I always wanted to support a fellow sportsman, whichever sport it is. I always felt supporting a small sport is always good. You need people to support small sports so that it become popular in future as well. I hope ice hockey can become really popular as well. It’s a great sport, it’s the quickest sport. We don’t know much about it because it’s winter oriented sport. But it’s great fun. It’s so fast,” said the left handed batsman from Delhi.
“It’s a big moment for us. I’ll be captaining the side for the first time but we are confident and hope to do well and make the country proud,” the 23-year-old Tsewang Gyaltson from Laddakh said who was at the event as well.