BIRATNAGAR: The South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) has warned the All Nepal Football Association after the hosts failed to meet the scheduled kick-off time because of lengthy opening ceremony of the SAFF Women’s Championship on Tuesday.
The opening match between Nepal and Bhutan was scheduled to begin at 3:00PM at Sahid Stadium and the ANFA had set the opening ceremony for 2:00PM. But due to the late arrival of chief guest, former Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the organisers were forced to start the formal programme only after 2:30PM. The match got underway at 3:12PM and Match Commissioner Mindu Dorji of Bhutan was furious about the delay in kick off.
“The match was delayed for few minutes because of unavoidable circumstances,” said an ANFA official, confirming the warning from SAFF. The ANFA had also prepared cultural shows and students from various schools were ready to perform during the opening ceremony. But due to the delay in the start of the formal programme, the student artists were also forced to perform during the half time of the match.
The presentation, which was overseen by National Sports Council Department Chief Kul Bahadur Thapa, was cut short in the middle for the resumption of the match.
A version of this article appears in print on March 14, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.