Indian Football Association ropes in sponsor for school tournament

Kolkata, Oct 25, 2010 (Calcutta Tube/IBNS): The Indian Football Association (IFA) for the first time has roped in a corporate house, Century Ply, to sponsor an inter-state football tournament for schools spanning over five weeks, said IFA secretary Utpal Ganguly here on Monday.

In this year’s tournament, whilst the winners will get Rs 50,000 and the runners up take Rs 30,000, such cash incentive is also the first of its kind for schools.

About 48 schools from the city and districts are expected to take part in the tournament, Bankim Cup, beginning from Oct. 27 at four venues – Rabindra Sarobar Stadium, Mohammedan Sporting ground, Makardah Stadium and the Heritage Ground.

While the group stage, featuring 16 groups, will be held between Oct. 27 and Nov. 11, the knockout starts with the pre-quarter finals. The quarterfinals are slated for Nov. 22-25.

The semifinals are on Dec. 1 and 2 and the summit clash is on Dec. 4. The venues for two semifinals and the final will be announced later, Ganguly said.

Ganguly said the tournament was aimed to promote soccer in the schools with emphasis to rope in the institutions where traditionally academics has been the prime focus.

He said, off late many elite schools have also showed keen interest to join the tournament, which is normally commanded by the district schools.

This year, holders Agarpara Mahajit Vidyalaya will also take part in the tournament.

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