Sports in Odisha

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Olly: Mascot for Sporting Events in Odisha

Sports is an important part of the culture of Odisha and hence it plays a key role in development of the state. Field hockey, athetics, tennis, rugby union, rugby sevens, association football and cricket the most popular sports in the Indian state of Odisha.

Odisha's capital city, Bhubaneswar, is nicknamed as the Sports Capital of India as it boasts world class infrastructure for carious sporting events.[1] The sporting events in Odisha are governed by the Sports and Youth Services of the Government of Odisha.

The Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar is finalised to host the 2018 Men's Hockey World Cup from 28 November to 16 December 2018.[2]


Odisha have been hosting various sporting events in the recent years. Following is a list of international events hosted by Odisha:


Event Year Organiser
Asian Athletics Championships 2017 Athletics Federation of India


Event Year Organiser Dates
Women's Gold Cup 2019 All India Football Federation
Football Association of Odisha
9 – 15 February 2019
FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup (Upcoming) 2020 All India Football Federation
Football Association of Odisha
21 September – 4 October 2020


Event Year Organiser
Hockey World Cup 2018 Hockey India
FIH Hockey World League 2017 Hockey India
Hockey Champions Trophy 2014 Hockey India


Event Year Organiser
Asia Rugby Women's Championship 26–28 October 2018 Odisha Rugby Football Association


Event Year Organiser
Asian Rowing Championships (Upcoming) November 2019 Odisha Association of Rowing and Sculling

Table Tennis[edit]

Event Year Organiser
Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships (Upcoming) 17–22 July 2019 Odisha State Table Tennis Association


Event Year Organiser
India F1 Futures 26 February 2018 – 4 March 2018 Odisha Tennis Association



Sport League Organiser
Cricket Odisha Premier League Odisha Cricket Association
Football FAO Super Cup Football Association of Odisha
Football FAO Football League Football Association of Odisha
Football FAO Women's League Football Association of Odisha
Tennis Odisha Tennis Premier League Odisha Tennis Association


National Leagues Hosted by Odisha[edit]

Event Year
I-League 2018-19
Indian Super League 2017-18
Indian Super Cup 2019
Event Year Organiser
Hockey India League 2014
Hockey India

Field hockey[edit]

Odisha's Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Unveiling the Trophy of the 2016–17 Men's FIH Hockey World League Final

Field hockey is the most popular sport in the state. In a first-of-its-kind association, the Government of Odisha, has become the first state government in India to sponsor a national team. In early 2018, the government launched its sporting logo, signing a five-year sponsorship agreement with Hockey India, replacing the former sponsors.[3] Odisha field hockey team has been providing India, with some extremely talented players, who eventually are called up for the national teams, i.e. India men's national field hockey team and India women's national field hockey team.

The 35th edition of the Hockey Champions Trophy i.e. 2014 Men's Hockey Champions Trophy was held between 6–14 December 2014 in Bhubaneswar, India.[4]

The 3rd and the last edition of the FIH Hockey World League, i.e. the qualification stage for the 2018 Men's Hockey World Cup, was held in Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha

The 14th edition of the Hockey World Cup i.e. 2018 Men's Hockey World Cup, was held from 28 November to 16 December 2018, at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. Belgium turned out to be the champions after defeating Netherlands in the Final on 16 December 2018.


Sport of athletics is another major sport in the state. Odisha has been producing some of the India's finest athletes who dominate in national and international sporting events. The 22nd edition of the Asian Athletics Championships i.e. 2017 Asian Athletics Championships, was held from 6 to 9 July 2017 at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India. Around 560 athletes from 41 countries attended the international event.[5][6]


Association football is also an uprising, popular sport in Odisha. Football Association of Odisha (FAO) is the administrating governing body for football in Odisha. In women's football particularly, the Odisha women's football team has dominated at national levels. The team has been providing the India women's national football team many players with mesmerizing talents. On the other hand, Odisha men's football team hasn't yet contributed for India national football team.


Rugby is popular both in men and women categories in Odisha. The Odisha Rugby Football Association is the state's administrating body for rugby football in Odisha. The Odisha women's rugby union team and Odisha women's rugby sevens team have been dominating since the past decade having won nearly all competitions at national levels. On the other hand, Odisha rugby union team and Odisha rugby sevens team have also made odisha proud with their performance at national levels. Both men and women of Odisha have provided India some of its best players. Odisha will be hosting the Asia Rugby Women's Championship from 26 to 28 October 2018.[7]


  1. ^ "Bhubaneswar is the Sports Capital of India: Narinder Batra, IOA President". Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  2. ^ "England & India to host Hockey World Cups 2018". FIH. 7 November 2013. Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  3. ^ "Odisha govt replace Sahara as Indian hockey team sponsors". Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  4. ^ "Bhubaneswar, not Delhi to host 2014 Men's Champions Trophy". The Times Of India. 2013-12-16. Retrieved 2013-03-03.
  5. ^ "22nd AAC 2017 - Bhubaneswar". Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  6. ^ "22nd Asian Athletics Championship 2017". Asian Athletics Championship. Retrieved 23 June 2018.
  7. ^ "Capital to host Asia U-18 rugby tourney". Retrieved 23 June 2018.

External links[edit]