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Football

Women footballers made to play in deplorable conditions in Senior Nationals

After the match, former Tottenham and Fulham Ladies player Tanvie Hans, who was playing for Karnataka, spoke up on a social media platform about the dire playing conditions.

Women footballers made to play in deplorable conditions in Senior Nationals
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By

The Bridge Desk

Published: 11 Sep 2019 12:33 PM GMT

Off late, Indian men’s football has been making great headway. They have had a meteoric rise in the world rankings over the last couple of years — all thanks to some solid performances by Sunil Chhetri and co.

With the improvement in rankings and performances, the popularity of the sport in the country has also risen by leaps. So much so, that foreign leagues and clubs have been prompted to engage Indian enthusiasts through customised grassroots training and outreach and to invest in Indian football.

However, on one side, when the men’s football is experiencing and exponential growth rate, the same cannot be said about women’s football in the country.

While the men’s team grabbed all the headlines on Wednesday morning after pulling off an incredible draw against reigning AFC Asian Cup champions Qatar, India’s top women footballers began their campaign in the 25th Senior Women’s National Championship. In one such match of the national championship, Bihar took on Karnataka.

You must be wondering why we are talking about this match in particular?

Well, for one, the conditions in which the match took place was absolutely horrific. The ground was completely flooded due to ongoing rains and the ball was hardly moving. There were stretches on the ground where it was almost unplayable.

After the match, former Tottenham and Fulham Ladies player Tanvie Hans, who was playing for Karnataka, spoke up on a social media platform about the dire playing conditions.

“We lost against Bihar yesterday, and I walked off in tears, not because of the loss, but because it was hardly a game of #football. The ground was flooded, and the ball was hardly moving. Heart broken by the conditions we are being asked to play in. I would be, even if we won,” Hans wrote on Twitter.

https://twitter.com/TanvieHans/status/1171700788818673664

Bihar went on to win the match 3-0 but more than the defeat, Hans was disheartened at the quality of the ground, which clearly had an impact on the gameplay.

It is disheartening to see that elite women footballers of the country are having to play in such deplorable conditions. With India set to host the U-17 FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2020, the facilities must improve if we are to expect something.

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