Kandy hockey comes to a standstill due to the pandemic | Daily News

Kandy hockey comes to a standstill due to the pandemic

Hockey, which is a popular sport in Kandy among Men and Women and in most of the schools have completely come to a standstill due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Hockey in Kandy dates as far back as 1907 when the Indian Rajput Regiment, one of the oldest infantry regiments of the Indian Army occupied the Kandy Military Barracks, currently known as the Police Grounds.

The first hockey encounter in Kandy was played in 1907 at the Bogambara Grounds when Kandy SC and the Industrial Schools Team met.

During that time St. Anthony’s College was housed at the present St. Sylvester’s College premises and they used the Military Barracks Square for all their sports.

The fearless youngsters found some places vacant whenever the military men did not turn up for their games. Gradually, more boys found the glamour of the game irresistible and in a matter of few months, they were soon at grips with the Indian military men.

Then the game went into slumber and once again in 1926, Kandy SC started a tournament and special mention must be made of John Jackson Smale, Harmer, Trailm Mclaughlanm, the Bengan brothers B and R, the Trinity master K. R. Pilcher (Oxford Blue) and Strefield (English County player).

Then in the 1930s, the game came back to Kandy thanks to M. S. Jainudeen, P. T. Rajan, V. D. Paul and J. O. Mendis who were involved in the game as players and coaches,

They started to play the game and introduced the game to schools and clubs. At that time only a few clubs showed interest.

As the years rolled by, hockey flourished in Kandy with several schools taking to the game.

During the World War, a large number of clubs and schools including foreign teams played in Kandy. Hockey in Kandy was well organised with local tournaments in full swing.

Today, the game is at top level, schools are doing well especially the Girls’ schools are dominating the game.

At club level, there are many teams in the game. Today, Kandy hockey under the leadership of R. Maheswaran is on a good footing.

What they lack is a proper place to play the game as there are no suitable grounds for hockey in Kandy.