|Premier league soccer begins
The "Premier League" Division II soccer tournament got off to a flying start ,with 48 teams in the fray in sixteen groups. After the introduction of professional soccer recently by the Football Federation, the game has progressed well.
The Football Federation decided to lay out a new format for the second division after the completion of the division I tournament which is now in progress.
Each group consists of three teams and they will meet each other once on a league basis. The winner of the each group will qualify for the knock-out tournament which will commence soon after completion of the league tournament.
To make the tournament an attractive one, the organizers have decide to give Rs. 5000/- each for the qualifying round group winners, pre-quarter final winners, quarter-final winners and semi-final winners. The winner of the tournament will carry away Rs. 100,000/- while the runner up will receive Rs. 50,000/-.
The pre-quarter final of this tournament is scheduled for January 10 while quarter final is scheduled to played on January 17. The semi final is scheduled for January 27 while the grand final will be held on February 3.
Meanwhile, the Football Federation gave away Rs. 100,000/- each for the division I teams. This is the second payment for these clubs. They collected the initial payment of Rs. 100,000/- at the inaugural press briefing earlier this year. They will receive a further Rs. 100,000/- before the final round early next year.
The payment for York Sports Club, one the oldest clubs in the soccer arena, was stopped due to lack of communication. At one stage they had informed the Federation that they might pull out from the tournament and later reverted the decision.
According to tournament committee chairman, Manilal Fernando, an inquiry into this matter will be held and then it will be decided whether to allow them to play and also regarding the payment.(AN)
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