Olympic stars V.R. Raghunath, S.V. Sunil may take part in the 90th edition of the All-India MCC-Murugappa Gold Cup hockey tournament to be held at the Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium here from September 1 to 11. Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) is the defending champion.
Originally started in 1901 as Madras Challenge Cup and later named AMM Arunachalam Challenge Cup, the tournament has gone through several changes, but the popularity and enthusiasm among the fans have not waned.
Speaking at a press meet here on Tuesday, Arun Murugappan, tournament sponsor, thanked the fans for their continued support.
This edition will have Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu, which performed well in the Senior National championships, instead of Indian Overseas Bank (IOB). The organisers said the bank team’s performance was “poor” last year and hence the decision.
The tournament, to be played on a league-cum-knock-out basis, will have 10 teams split into two groups.
The top two teams from each group will make the semifinals.
The winner will take home Rs. 5 lakh and the runner-up Rs. 2.5 lakh.
Manish N. Gour will be the Tournament Director.
In an exhibition match, MCC will take on The Hindu XI on August 31.
Groupings: Pool-A: IOC, BPCL, Air India, Hockey Unit of Tamil Nadu, Mumbai Hockey Association.
Pool-B: Army XI, Punjab National Bank (PNB), ONGC, Hockey Karnataka, Indian Railways.