Odisha FC celebrated Women’s Day in Bhubaneswar with its Women’s Team players and community on Wednesday, March 8.
On International Women’s Day, also celebrated as AFC Women’s Football day, the club organized a futsal match at the Z1 Apartments in Bhubaneswar, to promote football and connect with its local community. The event aimed to celebrate the achievements of women in football and encourage them to participate in sports.
The former captain of the Indian Women’s National Team, Ngangom Bala Devi, along with some of the Odisha FC Women players Deepa Nayak, Bannya Kabiraj, Susmita Tanty, Arifa Zaheer, Sonali Chemate, Grace Hauhnar, Sradhanjali Panda, Malati Munda, and Sasmita Parida were present at the event to interact with the participants and guests. The fans were thrilled to meet and greet their favorite players and took the opportunity to learn more about the sport.
The highlight of the afternoon was welcoming Odia football legend Sasmita Mallick, former India International and the highest goalscorer for the Indian Women’s National team. Ms. Mallick expressed her gratitude to everyone for attending the event and encouraged more girls to participate in sports, especially football, and to live a fit and healthy life through sports. Also in attendance was Randeep Baruah, Head of Academy and Women’s Football, Odisha FC.
The program was a huge success with members of the community turning up in large numbers to participate in various activities organized by the club through interactive sessions, football freestyle, and a friendly futsal tournament among the society’s Under-15 children. Ladies in attendance also took part in a friendly penalty shootout, encouraged greatly by the onlooking members of the Odisha FC Women’s Team.
The event was sponsored by the club’s prominent sponsors, Property Brand, KTM, Story Lab, and J&T Jewellery. The club hopes that the event will inspire more women to take up the sport and become an integral part of its local community. Odisha FC is committed to working towards the development of football at the grassroots level and looks forward to organizing more such events in the future.