The closing ceremony and prize distribution programme of the 5th Sheikh Kamal National Fencing Competition 2023 were held on Sunday at Shaheed Suhrawardy Indoor Stadium at Mirpur 10 in the capital.
Bangladesh Navy won the championship title with 7 gold medals, 4 silver medals and 6 bronze medals. Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) became the first runners-up obtaining 3 gold medals, 2 silver medals and 3 bronze medals. Ansar & VDP became the second runners-up with 2 gold medals, 6 silver medals and 5 bronze medals.
Bangladesh Bank’s former Governor and Bangabandhu Chair, Dhaka University Dr Atiur Rahman attended the event as the chief guest. He paid tribute to Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his family. Moreover, Dr Atiur paid homage to all martyrs of the Liberation War of 1971.
In his address, Dr Atiur Rahman said Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman himself was a football player. Bangabandhu’s eldest son Sheikh Kamal initiated modern sports and cultural activities in Bangladesh.
He applauded the dynamic role played by Bangladesh Fencing Federation (BFF) President Shoeb Chowdhury in popularising the game of fencing in Bangladesh. Football and cricket are at present very popular games in Bangladesh while fencing will soon become another leading sport in the country through the dedication and initiatives of BFF officials, Dr Atiur hoped.
Bangladesh Fencing Federation President Shoeb Chowdhury greeted all guests and fencers. Shoeb Chowdhury referred to Sheikh Kamal as the pioneer of sophisticated games in Bangladesh. Shoeb Chowdhury called upon fencers to undergo training programmes seriously and brighten the image of Bangladesh in international tournaments.
Bangladeshi fencers won 11 medals including one gold medal from the South Asian Games of 2019 and in the same way Bangladeshi fencers will be able to bring honour for the country from Olympic Games and Asian Games too, he continued.
Shoeb Chowdhury recollected Bangabandhu’s words “Nobody can hold us down”.
BFF General Secretary Selim Omrao Khan urged Bangladeshi fencers to prepare themselves properly to perform well in the Asian Games to be held in 2023. He termed Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina a sports-friendly leader. Selim Omrao Khan also expressed gratitude to State Minister for Youth and Sports Zahid Ahsan Russell for his cooperation to Bangladesh Fencing Federation.
Advisory Editor of The Asian Age and former Press Secretary to the Prime Minister AKM Shamim Chowdhury said Sheikh Kamal was a brave and proactive young man alongside founder of Abahani Krira Chakra. Sheikh Kamal also valiantly participated in the Liberation War of 1971, AKM Shamim Chowdhury added.
Former Director General of DGFI and ex-Commandant of National Defence College Lieutenant General (Retd) Sheikh Mamun Khaled said life is a struggle. He appreciated the steps taken by BFF President Shoeb Chowdhury to promote fencing in Bangladesh. He also spoke high of the zeal and sincerity of Bangladeshi fencers.
A memento was handed over to Indian coach and referee Dipak Singh while two officials from the sports wing of Chinese Embassy were also present on the occasion.