Third edition of The Hotel Devotee SPA Inter College Cricket Tournament better known for the massive cash prize is set to kick off today at Dhangadi. The tournament will run till 26th January with 16 teams participating in a knockout format.
In the opening match, host Sudur Paschimanchal Academy(SPA) will face Siddhanath Multiple College, Kanchanpur. Former prime minister of Nepal, Sher Bahadur Deuwa will inaugurate the tournament. “We approached Ram Baran Yadav for his presence to this opening ceremony but he could not come due to some reasons”, said Subash Shahi from the organizers committee. The second edition was inaugurated by vice president Pramananda Jha. So we tried this time to bring Yadav , but as he was unavailable we have invited region’s influential leader Deuwa, he added.
The highest cash prize tournament with the prize budget of Rs. 5 lakhs will see the 16 teams vie for the trophy. The winners will bag away cash prize of Rs. 2 lakhs while runner up will be awarded with Rs. 1 lakh. First edition of tournament had Rs. 25,000 and Rs. 10,000 as cash prize for the winners and runner up while second edition had Rs. 1 lakh and Rs. 40,000 as cash prizes. “When we organized the first edition our total budget was Rs. 4 lakhs, we had Rs. 12 lakhs for second edition and the third edition will now have a total budget of Rs. 20 lakhs of which 5 percent will go for prizes”, said Shahi, one of the member from organizing committee.
Player of the tournament will win Rs. 50,000 while best fielder, best batsman and best bowler will be awarded with cash prize of Rs. 25,000 each. Man of the final will take Rs. 15,000 and Rs. 5,000 has been allocated for each man of the match.
Out of 20 lakhs, 13 lakhs was collected from the sponsors while the remaining amount will be beared by SPA, said Shahi. We have no intense on making profit from this tournament. We have always been aiming on cricket development, said Yogendra Shahi, the chairman of SPA. If you think the name of SPA in the cup matters then we are ready to change the name. We understand our social responsibility, thus we have been organizing this tournament, he added.
Hotel Devotee is the main sponsor of the event while Bells Cafe, Om Palace, Chaudhary Book Depo, District Development Committee, Metropolitan City, Raika Tours and Travels are the co-sponsors. Expressing dissatisfaction, organizer Shahi said we approached many of the organizations and corporates for sponsorship but none paid us attention, thus we are organizing the tournament with the support of the people and organizations who love and are from Far West.
We haven’t invested for our profit, we have done it for the tourism development of Far West through sports, said Krishna Bahadur Mahara who is the director of Hotel Devotee, the prime sponsor of the tournament. We have made it on ourselves after the other corporates did not want to sponsor the tournament, Mahara further added. Director of Bells Cafe, Mahesh Shah said Development of sports is important and for that government must make investment but the government is quiet on these matters and especially for Far West. The SPA Cup has been running successfully beacause of the private sectors, the craze of cricket has grown at Far West and this has raised the eyes of many private companies to invest in cricket, Shah added.
Meanwhile, the organizers informed that the tournament will be held every two years. The earlier tournaments were held yearly. Pentagon College from Kathmandu was the winner of the inaugural edition while NASA International College won the second edition in 2067.
Cricnepal is the online partner of the event.