The three member Kashmir team is all set to represent India in the World SnowShoe championship-2016 that was inaugurated at picturesque ski resort of Vezza de Ogllio, Italy on Saturday.
The three member Indian team comprise of three Kashmiri sportsmen, Mir Muddasar who is World SnowShoe Federation (WSSF) delegate and two players, Tanveer Hussain of J&K Bank and Umer Nabi of Khyber group. It is first time that Indian contingent is participating in any snowshoe event at International level. The event kick started on Saturday with colorful inauguration ceremony that involved flag march cum parade of the participating Countries through the Vezza de Ogglio town under moonlight followed by music and water fire show and the live rock band. The people of whole town had assembled at the Brescia Town hall to cheer for the contingents of 14 Countries who are taking part in the event.
The competition is scheduled to be held on Sunday and will involve around nine kilometer of snowshoe run. After the World event athletes would take part in the open snowshoe event that is known as Caspolada locally. The event is a regular feature of the town and attracts more than 4000 athletes from all over Italy for the participation. This is year due to dry weather conditions organizers had to prepare the snow track by getting g snow from mountains and lay a track upto to higher reaches.
Giving details, Mir Muddasar who is also SnowShoe Federation of India President, said, "It is for the first time that Indian team, having all the three participants from Kashmir, is taking part in the World event. It is beautiful sport that doesn't require high level of expertise. Any normal run with little bit of race behind can turn into snowshoe runner. It only requires snowshoes," he said.
"The response from the WSSF and local organizers and other visiting contingents has been amazing. We have been welcomed by everyone and the level of preparation they have put into making this event a success is amazing. To take part in this event is first step towards introducing the snowshoe sport in India and most importantly in Kashmir. We have got the winter resorts and the snowshoe activity once introduced will be huge hit," he added.
TanveerHussain of J&K Bank who is representing India in the competition said that the platform where is going to particulate is big and competition is going to be tough.
"It is big event with more than 400 athletes representing 14 countries. They have been in the sport from long and it is going to be tough to beat them. However, I will try my best to rise to occasion and bring glory to India and Kashmir," he said.
Tanveer is being sponsored for the event by his employer organization J&K Bank and he is all praise for the J&K Bank for helping him to make his dream come true.
"It is always a dream of any player to participate in such World events. However, this all would not have turned into reality if J&K Bank where I work would not have sponsored me. I am thankful to Chairman J&K Bank Mushtaq Ahmad, Executive President Rouf Bhat and Incharge Corporate Communications SajadBazaz for their help and encouraging words. I will try to make them proud when I step into the competition on Sunday," he said.
In the event apart from India Countries like USA, Russia, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, Tunishia, Estonia, Spain, Catalunia, Finland and Swedenare participating.