Chandigarh- December 26th 2006: Western Union, a leading provider of global money transfer services, in association with ESPN Star Sports, today announced a joint sponsorship of two of the leading premier hockey league teams – Sher-e-Jalandhar and Chandigarh Dynamos – at the Premier Hockey League (PHL) for the season starting January 2007. This is the third consecutive year that Western Union has extended its support to the two teams of Punjab.
In January 2005, Western Union had signed a three year contract with ESPN Star Sports to sponsor the two teams at the Premier Hockey League (PHL). The league series will be played from January 4, 2007 to March 5, 2007 and the tournament will see 7 teams from all over the country fighting for the top position. Premier Hockey League is one of the most respected and popular hockey tournaments in the country today.
Addressing a press conference in Chandigarh, Suvodeep Das, Head of Marketing – South Asia, Western Union, said, “Western Union through this association with the Premier Hockey League aims to encourage and revive our national game across the country. By sponsoring the two key teams of Punjab, we wish to assure all Punjabis of our whole hearted support to bring back the glory of hockey as national sports and make Punjab a dominant player in the game. Last year Chandigarh Dynamos were the Runner’s Up and this year we wish to see both teams reach higher.”
To ensure that the hockey playing talent is identified and groomed at a much younger age, Western Union also announced that it will sponsor the Junior Hockey League team from the state with a view to strengthen the future of Hockey.
“We strongly believe that for sustainable development of the game it is very important to groom the young generation of players. With this view we have decided to sponsor the Junior Hockey league team from Punjab as well,” he informed.
Also present on the occasion was Nirmal Dayani, Director – Consumer Marketing of ESPN Software India Pvt Ltd who said, “PHL has announced the campaign “Garv Nahin to Kuch Nahin” which will support certain causes for each of PHL team cities. In Punjab, PHL will build support and will contribute towards renaissance of hockey in the state. Chandigarh for Hockey and Jallandhar for Hockey are the causes we will be promoting in Punjab.”
Jimmy Shergill, brand ambassador for the Shere Jallandhar and Chandigarh Dynamos, in support of PHL: “It’s my pleasure to be associated with the boys of Sher-e-Jalandar & Chandigarh Dynamos and we Punjabis usually play to win. I’m sure my home side will proudly hold the Punjabi spirit and pride high.”
“It is our honor to be bestowed with this support from the two highly respected names- Western Union and ESPN Star sports”, said Kanwalpreet Singh, captain of Sher-e-Jalandhar “We look forward to making the best use of this opportunity and performing exceedingly well at the PHL games”.
Added Mr. Rajpal Singh, captain Chandigarh Dynamos, “With leading brands like Western Union and ESPN associating with the game, our National sport is set for a bigger leap. This sponsorship further boosts our morale and inspires us to play a successful game.”
Western Union has launched a national-level marketing multimedia campaign, comprising press, television and merchandising, to promote the two teams and create a sense of excitement and enthusiasm for the game of hockey.