The first edition of the Khelo India University Games is set to get underway from February 22 and will be hosted by Government of Odisha.

The aim behind this initiative is to provide platform for university-level athletes to showcase their talents.

Rahul Shankar, a tennis player, is hopeful the the event will help in providing more exposure to the game. “I am extremely excited to participate in the first edition of the Khelo India University Games. I firmly believe that these Games are a step in the right direction for sports on the collegiate level in our country, especially for tennis since there is not a lot of exposure,” said Shankar.

Among the participants is Kalyani Saxena, currently one of the top swimmers in the country having won 47 medals till date. Kalyani’s father feels that there is a wave of change coming in terms of collegiate sports.

“Kalyani’s university has been of great help in her development as a swimmer through the years by readily providing her with academic and attendance concessions. I feel there is a wave of change coming in terms of collegiate sports in our country, and the Khelo India University Games is an embodiment of the same,” he said.

A serial fencer Ena Arora believes the University Games will put fencing into the national spotlight. “I believe the Khelo India University Games will put fencing into the national spotlight and enable more athletes to come out and participate. We have been left frustrated with the lack of competitions and exposure of the sport,” said Arora.