he 35th National convention of the Sports Journalists’ Federation of India (SJFI) will get underway here on Wednesday and is expected to be attended by around 100 sports scribes from across the country.

The five-day event will feature competitions for the J.K.Bose trophy (cricket), A.C. Bali trophy (table tennis) besides penalty-kicks, putting and the newly-introduced free-throws and rapid chess.

Further, the delegates will also join elite panels in discussing issues relating to Formula 1 racing, India’s preparations for the 2012 London Olympics, sports infrastructure and development, the standards of coaching in Indian cricket and the reasons regarding the vast popularity of the game.

The convention will kick-off with a seminar on Formula 1 racing at the P.Y.C. Hindu Gymkhana hall with the delegates being addressed by Vicky Chandokh, president, Federation of Motor Sports Clubs of India (FMSCI), Prithviraj Sidappa (Volkswagen India), Shrikant Karani (Sportscraft), Askari H. Zaidi (Jaiprakash Associates), Sanjay Sharma (J.K.Tyres), India’s promising race driver Aramaan Ebrahim and Adil Jal Dharukhanawala (Zigwheels).

Cricketing legend Chandu Borde will inaugurate the inter-zonal J.K.Bose trophy Twenty20 tournament and other sports events on June 2.

The day will also witness ace shooter Gagan Narang discuss the preparations of the Indian shooting team for the 2012 London Olympics in the presence of Guangzhou gold medallist Bajrang Lal Takhar, Samir Pradhan (Lakshya), Viren Rasquinha and Nikhil Latey (both Olympic Gold Quest) and Dr.Vece Paes, Olympian and sports medicine expert.

The seminar on June 3 focussing on sports infrastructure and development is to be addressed by Ajay Shirke (president, MCA), Col. Sambhaji Patil (president, MHA) and Chirag Tanna (Pune FC), while an equally distinguished panel comprising Vasu Paranjape, W.V. Raman, Ratnakar Shetty, Abhijit Sarkar, Jatin Paranjape, Vijay Patil and Rajesh Mehrotra will lead the discussions on Indian cricket over the next two days.

Former national badminton champion, Nandu Natekar and national cricket selector, Surendra Bhave will be the chief guests at the valedictory function of the convention which will also witness the release of ‘SJFI Summer Collection 2011’ – a complete dossier on India’s sporting achievements in 2010.

The convention is being conducted with the sponsorship support extended by Sahara Indian Pariwar, Volkswagen India, Vodafone, Indian Oil, Standard Chartered, Buddh International Circuit, Pune FC, Kingfisher, United Breweries, Coca Cola India, Lakshya, Bharati Vidyapeeth University, Manisha Constructions, PYC Hindu Gymkhana, Nike, Procam International, Videocon, Planet Sports, Innovators and Zzebra Public Relations.

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