SAFF U-16 Championship: India Drawn in Group A With Pakistan and Maldives
India have been clubbed with Pakistan and Maldives in Group A in the SAFF U-16 Championship to be held from August 1 to 10, 2011 at the Dashrath Stadium, Kathmandu, Nepal.
The host Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are in Group B. India will kick off their campaign against Pakistan in the opening match of the tournament on August 1, while they will take on Maldives on August 5.
The teams finishing first and second from each group will qualify for the semifinals, while the teams finishing third will vie for fifth and sixth place.
Both the semifinals will be played on August 8, while the third place play-off and finale will be held on August 10, 2011.
The U-16 coach Thomas Joseph is quite confident of good show from the boys and believes that his side will excel in the tournament.
‘’We have a balanced side and all the boys are good,’’ He said. ‘’We have prepared very well for this tournament and will try to put our best forward right from the outset,’’ He further added.
‘’The condition here are different but the boys are ready to deal with any situation.’’
Mr. Alberto Colaco, SAFF General Secretary is quite confident that this endeavor will mark a new beginning for the SAFF in terms of conducting age group tournament s and said,’’ It’s necessary to give a good exposure to the U-16 Boys before they participate in the AFC U-16 qualification.’’
‘’The condition in the SAFF regions are not ideal as compared to Europe. But, I know it’s a good beginning and things will move ahead in right direction.’’ He added.