January 8, 2012

Southern Railway & ONGC win Athirampuzha JCI Tournament

ONGC (Men) and Southern Railway (Women) won the top prize at the 3rd Athirampuzha JCI All-India Invitational Basketball Tournament on Friday, January 6th, at the St Aloysius Basketball Court at Athirampuzha in Kottayam, Kerala. The Men's winners, ONGC, walked home with a 40,000 rupees cash prize while Southern Railway were awarded Rs. 30,000 for winning the women's division in the tournament.

The Men's final was a star-studded affair between ONGC of Dehradun and IOB from Chennai: but it was ONGC's stars that shone brighter on the final day. Bolstered by the addition of Vishesh Bhriguvanshi and Yadwinder Singh, ONGC had become one of India's strongest teams - at least on paper - a few months ago. But both the players were barred from taking part in the Senior Nationals held in Chennai recently, where the ONGC-powered Uttarakhand only managed a seventh-place finish.

But there was no stopping the duo at the tournament in Athirampuzha - Vishesh and Yadwinder led the way in the final with 19 and 15 points respectively as ONGC cruised to a 63-47 victory over IOB.

The Women's final was between Southern Railway and Kerala Fives, and it saw a predictable result and a predictable star. Geethu Anna Jose, who recently celebrated a gold medal at the Senior Nationals with Indian Railways, was once again an imposing force in the middle, scoring 16 points to lead her side to a 50-32 win.

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