Ratna Cup soccer begins tomorrow

Lalitpur, August 18:

All Nepal Football Association is organising the Ratna Cup Inter-school Boys Football Tournament from August 20-September 2 at the newly-built ANFA Technical Centre at Chyasal on the occasion of 78th birthday of Queen Mother Ratna. In all, 40 schools from three districts of Kathmandu Valley — Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur — are taking part in the tournament, said the organisers at a press meet today. The participating 40 teams will be divided into four pools of 10 teams each and will be played in the knock-out basis. There will be four 80-minute matches played everyday — at 8:30am, 9:30am, 1:10pm and 2:30pm.

Bal Mandir had been organising similar tournaments in the past. “As the Bal Mandir has not been organising the tournament for the last six years, we are organising the tournament from this year,” said Ganesh Thapa, president of ANFA. “We hope the tournament will help us in developing football in the grass-root level,” he added. The participants have to pay Rs 1,000 each as the registration charge and the ANFA will bear all the expenses — estimated to be around Rs 200,000. “We are initiating to organise the one of the most popular football tournaments which was not in the existence for a long time to expedite the sport among youth,” said Kumar Thapa, acting general secretary of ANFA, in a statement.