SpecialStory:-  A trophy carries dust, Memories last forever


The Mayo Memorial Hall was built in 1879 by R. Roskell Bayne. Depicting the colonial architecture of the 19th and 20thcenturies. The hall has a tower 180 ft high and the interiors were designed by Professor Gamble of the South Kensington Museum from London. Built in memory of the assassinated viceroy Mayo, earlier the hall used to hold public meetings, receptions and balls. It has been given the status of a monument by the Government of Uttar Pradesh later and further on converted into the full fledged Sports complex in the name of Mayo Hall Sports Complex under the Sports Directorate, U.P. Government  and rechristened to Amitabh Bachchan Sports Complex.

Mayo Hall sports Complex is now known as Amitabh Bachchan Sports Complex but still the people call the said sports complex as Mayo Hall which is situated in the heart of the city just nearby Civil Lines, Prayagraj. The way back sports complex is taken over by the State Sports Department and the Govt. has provided excellent facilities and also time to time modernise these facilities at the highest level.  The Mayo Hall Sports Complex is having facilities of so many games like Lawn Tennis, Badminton, Table tennis, Basketball, Volley Ball, Squash, and Gymnastics, the place is historical and has produced so many National/International players who have brought laurels for the State as well as for the Country. The Mayo Hall Sports Complex is going to celebrate its completion of 50 years as sports complex and among the said era I have played and seen top level of tennis champions about 36 years at this sports complex, being a tennis player I have been associated with this sports complex since 1986 from the age of 12 years, played State/ National/ International tournaments, the sports complex has given a lot to us and we have spend major part of our life here.

I have seen playing Shri Deepak Bhargava and Late Amit Bhargava former junior Asian Champions,  Shri Mayank Kapoor, Shri Deepak Bhargava  still play, guide and help the juniors at May Hall apart of them I have also witnessed the playing of Shri Zeeshan Ali , (International player and right now Coach of Indian Team), Shri Leander Paes (Davis Cup Player and former World No.01), Sourabh Sharma (Former Junior National Champion), Shri Asif Ismail (Davis Cup Player)and Shri Kamlesh Shukla who is going to represent Indian team at Senior ITF  in different tournaments at Mayo Hall Sports Complex. I have also seen and taken coaching from one of the greatest coach of the world Late Akhtar Ali who was former National coach of India, Malaysia & Belgium, Shri Ali has conducted coaching camp at this sports complex. The complex has also produced lot of State level and National level tennis players like Rishi Sharma, Ankur Agarwal, KaptanKarsoliya, Irfan Ahmad, Kaifi Afzal, Nitish Raj and in the female category Tulika Singh and Jaya Awasthi and so many others. Among them so many players are now professional coaches/trainer sand still producing the quality of players at different tennis centres in our country and overseas, so the sports complex was instrumental in providing vast number of jobs to the tennis players during the said period. The Mayo Hall Sports Complex is having three synthetic courts and still the level of playing standard of tennis is very high, Anurag Mishra, Mann Kesarwani & Sajal Keserwani etc. are the players who are still playing the National circuit and reaching up to Semi Finals and Finals level at AITA tournaments, Shri Arvind Sonkar is a coach who is looking after the tennis coaching these days and conducting the tennis training program for these boys.

I myself congratulate the former tennis coaches Shri Om Prakash Gupta, Shri Junaid Akhtar on behalf of the tennis enthusiast who have given their valuable services and produced so many National level tennis players during these period and this article may not be completed without mentioning the name of Bula Ganguli Madam who has supported the tennis players and tennis administration during her tenure as Officer-in-charge of Mayo Hall Sports Complex. And pay sincere tribute to my father late S.A.Malik who was Secretory of Allahabad Tennis Association/Joint Secretory of U.P. Tennis Association and organised hundreds of  District/State/ All India Tennis tournaments and coaching camps  at this sports Complex resulting which we saw numbers of tennis champs playing tennis in the arena.  And my sincere regards to the ground staff Mr. Rajendra Pal and Mr. Shafiq for their valuable services to the tennis arena. At the last; I convey my gratitude to the U.P. State Government and Sports Directorate of U.P from the whole tennis fraternity for providing the excellent and world class tennis facilities at Mayo Hall Sports Complex, Prayagraj. The great gymnast of U.S.A Mary Lou Rettonsaid “A trophy carries dust, Memories last forever.”


Author:-Tahir Malik

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