Hockey WC: No hotel for Welsh super fan Lynne, 16 others in Rourkela

(Photo courtesy: Lynne Morgan)ROURKELA: The travel itinerary for a group of fans from Wales hasn’t worked out to perfection. But it’s the last thing on their mind. The group of 17, led by Lynne Morgan — the septuagenarian super fan of Welsh hockey, would rather talk about their visit to the Taj Mahal than the eight-hour travel they are ready to endure on every match-day to support the Welsh team in their Men’s Hockey World Cup debut.The group was on its way to Ranchi from Agra, when contacted them. They reached Ranchi on Thursday night, after sight-seeing.”The Taj Mahal was as amazing as we had heard about it,” said Lynne, who played for Ashford Hockey Club and then served as a club servant for five decades. She received the lifetime achievement award from the club last year.”Most of us are on our first trip to India, and it’s just been amazing so far,” she said.The travel agent couldn’t find them a bulk booking in a single hotel in Rourkela. They were offered an option: Stay in Ranchi, travel four hours to Rourkela on match days and return to Ranchi post match. All of them okayed it.(Photo courtesy: Lynne Morgan)”Of course, it would have been ideal to stay in Rourkela, but our travel agent couldn’t book the same hotel for all of us,” she said. “But we are not complaining. We will go to any length to support our team.”I think there is also an England supporter who will also be doing the same thing — staying in Ranchi and travelling to Rourkela for England’s games.”Lynne has travelled the world to watch hockey and took no time to decide about coming to India after Wales made it to their first men’s World Cup.Wales are in Pool D, along with hosts India, England and Spain. They open their campaign against traditional rivals England on Jan 13, followed by the match against Spain on Jan 15.Wales will then travel to Bhubaneswar for their concluding pool game against hosts India.”We are so much looking forward to the match against India,” said an excited Lynne.”Full stadium, deafening noise. Just can’t wait for it.”