India, UK celebrate ‘incredible’ living bridge with Week of Sport

UK High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis (left) speaks with Indian cricketer Dinesh Karthik
UK High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis (left) speaks with Indian cricketer Dinesh Karthik

A series of on and off the field interactions across themes highlighting diversity in sports including cricket, hockey, football, track and field, racquet sports and rugby will be the focus as the India-UK Week of Sport kicked off on February 21.

The event, being held as a celebration of the “incredible” diaspora living bridge between both nations in India’s 75th year of Independence, will include Olympic and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Neeraj Chopra, cricketer Dinesh Karthik, para-badminton World Champion Manasi Joshi, tennis legend Vijay Amritraj and India rugby captain Vahbiz Bharucha among others. The Week of Sport, running until February 27, will showcase the best of sport with events involving Indian and British personalities reflecting on their own journeys to celebrate the shared love of sport and the opportunities it creates in both countries.

“The UK and India share a love for sports. Cricket, football, tennis, badminton, and hockey bring us together. The Week of Sport is a celebration of this bond and our living bridge,” said Alex Ellis, British High Commissioner to India.

“I look forward to more activities this year as India celebrates 75 years of Independence and the UK hosts the Commonwealth Games and the final match of the Test series,” he said.

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The Week of Sport will lead up to “India-UK Together 2022”, a joint initiative led by the British Council and the Indian Council for Cultural relations (ICCR) set to launch later this year. It will celebrate the unique connections that can help shape the future of both nations through a diverse programme of activities – highlighting the strong cultural links between Britons and Indians – across sport, education, the arts, and much more. It is also a precursor to the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in July-August 2022.

“As two great democracies, both India and the UK share a vision to empower the next generation of leaders,” the British High Commission in New Delhi said.

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Citizens from both countries are being invited to share their favourite India-UK sporting memories on Twitter with #IndiaUKTogether.

The Week of Sport comes against the backdrop of Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Boris Johnson commitment to strengthen work between India and the UK over the next decade with the 2030 Roadmap for future relations and the ongoing negotiations towards a free trade agreement (FTA).

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