Kolkata Thunderbolts, the defending champions of RuPay Prime Volleyball League, are all set to defend their championship in Season 2, after a power packed kick-off event during the iconic Kolkata Bookfair at Boimela Prangan on 1st February. The team unveiled their newest member to the squad, their mascot TOOFAN, THE TIGER, in addition to launching their new “AWAY” jersey as the league moves into a home/away kit format.
Mr. Gurbux Singh, Olympic gold medallist for Hockey and Arjuna Awardee, Ms. Bula Choudhury, Padma Shri and Arjuna Awardee for Swimming, Mr. Premjit Sen (Hanshi), World Champion in Karate, and Mr. Rahul Banerjee, Arjuna Awardee for Archery, were present during the event. CA Pawan Kumar Patodia, the Chairman & Co-Owner of Kolkata Thunderbolts presided over the event accompanied by Team Director Mr. Sumedh Patodia.
The top management of the team went on to announce to the gathering that the wonder boy of Indian Volleyball, Ashwal Rai, will be continuing as the captain of the squad for season 2.
Bidhannagar Mayor Krishna Chakraborty and Ms. Dola Banerjee sent regrets for not being able to make it to the event due to last minute out of town engagements.
Season 2 of the RuPay Prime Volleyball powered by A23, starting from the 4th of February in Bengaluru, Karnataka. Both the management and the playing squad witnessed some major developments in the second season, with the onboarding of Narayan Alva, one of the most decorated coaches in Volleyball, as the Head Coach of the team, and Sumedh Patodia, an IIM Ahmedabad alumnus, as the Team Director to set up the entire management structure within the company. The Chairman & Co-Owner, CA Pawan Kumar Patodia took some bold and non-conventional decisions during the auction, including players and coaching staff from 13 different states, on a mission to unite the country through Volleyball. Recently, the team also announced Ms. Ishu Hirawat as the Official Sports Presenter for the team, to bridge the gap between the fans and the players by offering them “Inside KTB” insights.
The newest addition to the team, the mascot – Toofan, the Tiger, was conceptualized with efforts spanning across the last months, to act as a true embodiment of the spirit of Bengal.
“Sports and education go hand in hand, which is why we wanted to launch our mascot and new jersey at Kolkata’s very own Bookfair Festival, a classic tradition of the city. The mascot and the new jersey are both more deeply inspired by the Tiger symbolizing the hunger and passion towards growth in Bengal,” stated Mr. Pawan Kumar Patodia in his address. With their eyes on bringing back the gold for the city, Kolkata Thunderbolts will be playing the season’s inaugural match against Bengaluru Torpedoes to test their mettle on the 4th of February 2023 at Koramangala Indoor Stadium in Bengaluru.
Kolkata Thunderbolts are the inaugural season champions of the RuPay Prime Volleyball League, powered by A23. The league is broadcasted domestically on Sony Sports Network and internationally on Volleyball World, garnering a viewership of 133 million last year. The other city franchise includes Mumbai Meteors (owned by PhonePe founders Sameer Nigam and Rahul Chari), Bengaluru Torpedoes (owned by EatFit founder Ankit Nagori), Hyderabad Black Hawks (owned by Abhishek Reddy and actor Vijay Devarakonda), Kochi Blue Spikers (owned by Mr. Thomas Muthoot from Muthoot Fincorp), Calicut Heroes (owned by the Beacon Group), Ahmedabad Defenders (owned by the Chaudhari family) and Chennai Blitz (owned by the SPP Group).