New Delhi, 27 September 2017: Hockey India on Wednesday congratulated Davinder Bhatia, Anjali Sharma and Sonia Bathla on being promoted to FIH Technical Category 3 for Outdoor Hockey.
For Davinder Bhatia, who was part of the Indian Women’s team that won the Gold Medal at the 1981 Asia Cup and 1982 Asian Games, this promotion is an opportunity to stay connected to the sport. “With the blessing of god and Hockey India, I have got this appointment where I will be a Judge during international matches. For so many women to take up technical roles is the result of Hockey India’s special programs where they are encouraging more and more youngsters especially women to take up umpiring and involve in the sport as Technical Officials,” said the Bhatia, 56, from Delhi.
Former Delhi University Hockey team Captain, Sonia Bathla began her career on the technical front when she became an Umpire with Hockey India in 2010. However, her exposure as a Judge during the Hockey India League between 2013 – 2017 helped her take up the role of Technical Official and was there after appointed by AHF in 2015. “I used to officiate in Hockey India’s domestic tournaments as an Umpire but my stint during the Hockey India League helped me understand the technical aspects of being a Judge and officiating matches. During the HIL, I also got used to the Tournament Management System (TMS) software which is widely used by FIH too. In my new role, I will be going for the 3rd Women’s Asian Challenge – 2017,” stated an elated Sonia Bathla, 31, from Delhi.
Anjali Sharma, on the other hand, attributes her promotion to Hockey India for encouraging former players to take up the role of an Official. “It is because of Hockey India’s efforts that we are getting such great opportunities. I started off as Technical Official in 2011 at Hockey India National Championships and thereafter was selected by FIH. I see this promotion as a matter of pride not just for me but for India. This is a good chance to enhance our knowledge and translate the same into the domestic circuit as well,” Sharma, 41, from Delhi said.
Congratulating Davinder Bhatia, Anjali Sharma and Sonia Bathla, Ms Mariamma Koshy, President, Hockey India said, “It is a feeling of pride that women have become flag-bearers in serving as Technical Officials at the domestic and international level. I feel the promotion of Davinder Bhatia, Anjali Sharma and Sonia Bathla will encourage many other women, especially former hockey players, to take up the role of Umpiring and as Technical Officials and continue to contribute to the sport. I congratulate Davinder Bhatia, Anjali Sharma and Sonia Bathla for this promotion and wish them the very best for future assignments from FIH.”