Nita Ambani kicks off bigger and better RFYS Season 2 in Kochi
August 16, 2017: The second edition of the path-breaking Reliance Foundation Youth Sports’ national football competition kicked off here on Wednesday in Kochi, with its chairperson Mrs. Nita Ambani committing to transforming India into a multi-sports nation in the not too distant future.
Mrs. Ambani, a proud Member of the International Olympic Committee, seeks to build a grassroots sports eco-system in the country that will not only encourage kids and youngsters to take up sport but will also provide every child a platform to nurture his or her talent.
Cheered on by hundreds of school kids at the Rajagiri Public School here in Kochi, Mrs. Ambani ceremoniously launched the second season of RFYS along with India striker and Kerala Blasters star CK Vineeth to throw open the championship that will be played in 30 cities across the country.
“Reliance Foundation Youth Sports has been conceived to reignite sports in schools and colleges,” Mrs. Ambani said, just before the inaugural match between Rajagiri Public School and Assisi Vidya Niketan.
“We are aiming to create a unified sports structure through RFYS and have a holistic plan for all major Olympic sports. We would like to provide a viable sports career opportunities for the youth of our country,” she added.
The RFYS football tournament is set to become the biggest grassroots effort in the country, with over 3,000 educational institutes and more than 60,000 children preparing to compete over the next five months.
The championship which was held in the eight ISL cities in the inaugural year will see the participation from Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Shillong, Aizwal, Imphal, Hyderabad and Jamshedpur as well this year. In Kerala and Goa, which are known for their footballing talent, the RFYS 2017-18 season will extend to schools and colleges in their entire state.
One of the poignant moments at the launch was the induction of Ajith Sivan, a 20-year-old student from Nirmala College in Kochi, into the Kerala Blasters team for the upcoming ISL.
“Ajith showcased his skills in the RFYS tournament last year. He proved to be so good and promising that the Blasters have already picked him up,” Mrs. Ambani proudly declared. “We are confident that we will help discover many more Ajith Sivans in the country with our long term commitment to grassroots sports,” she added.
The RFYS national football competition will be played in four categories: Junior Boys, Senior Boys, Senior Girls and College Boys. It will begin with the pre-qualifying rounds in each city and will be followed by the main draw to pick the worthy winner; the winning teams will then compete with each other to coronate the national champion
Reliance Foundation Youth Sports will produce video footage from the matches, starting with the main draw to the finals. This will help the scouts assess the raw talent across the country. Additionally, the archived video footage is expected to assist in technical analyses, as also in identifying shortcomings so that they can be curbed at a young age itself.