BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik congratulated the Indian rugby U-18 girls' team, who recently bagged a silver medal during the Asian Rugby Sevens Championship, through a video message here at Lok Seva Bhawan on Wednesday.
The State Government also announced a cash award of Rs5 lakh for the team.
"My heartiest congratulations to U-18 Girls' national rugby team... You played beautifully and narrowly missed the gold medal. We are very proud of this achievement. It's the start of a new journey and in the coming years, we will make history. Odisha will continue to be a partner of Rugby India," said Patnaik.
Rugby India, while congratulating the team, announced a cash award of Rs25,000 to each member of the team. BLADE, one of the partners of the team, also announced cash awards to a similar tune.
"The team has made us all extremely proud with their performance and victory. These young girls put up a stellar show on an international platform. The Odisha will continue to support the teams to groom them into the finest player of the country," Tusharkanti Behera, Sports and Youth Services Minister, said.
"You invest your available resources on your players and they will never let you down. This is the first step towards our vision 2028. The generous financial bonuses from sponsors and partners to our U-18 girls' squad will boost not just this team's morale but have an incredibly positive effect across all our national teams. It will motivate them to perform fiercely at the international level and win accolades for the country," said Rugby India Board Member, actor and director Rahul Bose.
"You have really made us proud with your heroic efforts at Tashkent. After the early setback in the championship, we fought like a fighter to earn the silver medal. Your die-hard attitude is an inspiration for all," said R Vineel Krishna, Sports and Youth Services secretary.
Member of Parliament Achyuta Samanta, Indian Rugby Football Union president Vikram Ahuja, Odisha Rugby Football Association secretary Upendra Kumar Mohanty were also present during the occasion.