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In our cricket euphoria, we often forget that hockey is India’s national game, and that we have won 8 Olympic gold medals in the sport. Hockey in My Blood is a film on hockey in Coorg set in the backdrop of the Kodava Hockey Festival. Coorg (Kodagu district) is a small, hilly coffee growing region in South India. Its people, the Kodavas, are a martial-tribal community known for strong ties to land and family. It is said that if a Kodava is not working on a coffee plantation, he is likely either in the Indian army or playing field hockey.

Come 2013, and the Madanda Family plays host to the 17th straight edition of the annual event, with over 200 families in contention. The chief organizer is a former rugby player. A proud sportsman, he wants to set world standards in Coorg and works hard to transform barren hinterland into a hockey field. In this background, the film moves between Coorg and Bangalore, exploring the Kodavas’ historic love for the game. We see players from many families, young boys and girls, fathers, uncles, mothers, professionals and even former Olympic heroes.
With the families playing for bragging rights for the rest of the year, victories are hard fought and competition can get heated. At the end of the month-long event, there will be just one winning team but many winners – the sport and the sense of community not least among them. Welcome to The Kodava Hockey Festival!

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