CHENNAI: The inaugural Commonwealth junior (under-20) fencing championship will be held at the Nehru Indoor Stadium here from January 24 to 29. Two hundred and twenty four participants from nine countries are expected for the event.

T.K. Balu, Director, Co-ordination, said on Monday that India is fielding two teams - A and B - in the championship. "The Commonwealth Fencing Federation has allowed India to field two teams," he said.

Australia, England, Malaysia, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Singapore and Wales are the other countries in the fray.

Henry John Ramsay, Chairman, Technical Commission, Commonwealth Fencing Federation, said he was impressed with the preparations and hoped that the tournament would help unearth young local talents.

R.J. Ruban, President, Tamil Nadu Fencing Association, said the Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT) has bought equipment worth Rs. 50 lakhs for the championship.

W.I. Davaram, Vice-President, SDAT, said, "it's possible for us (India) to get medals in the championship."

Balu said, "we look forward to extensive support from the Tamil Nadu Government and other sponsors."

The overall trophy - India Trophy - is sponsored by SDAT. The Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, J. Jayalalithaa, will inaugurate the event. - Sports Reporter

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