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Indian Women's League (IWL)

AIFF postpones IWL qualifiers amidst controversy and increasing Covid cases

The AIFF has decided to postpone the qualifiers for the upcoming IWL citing the increasing number of coronavirus cases.

AIFF IWL qualifiers postponed

Gokulam Kerala with the IWL trophy last season (Source: AIFF)


Sayan Chatterjee

Published: 4 April 2021 11:21 AM GMT

The All India Football Federation (AIFF) has on Sunday announced that the qualifiers for the impending Indian Women's League (IWL) have been postponed until further notice. The qualifiers were set to begin on the 7th of April in New Delhi while the IWL final round is tentatively scheduled to start on the 21st. The official statement from the federation states that the measure has been taken keeping in mind the rising number of Covid cases in the country.

This season's main competition will feature 12 teams out of which 8 were champions of their respective state leagues while two will come via the qualifiers. How the remaining two slots will be filled is anybody's guess with the AIFF not having confirmed anything yet. There have also been questions raised on the transparency of the system by which the AIFF has relegated winners of the other 8 state leagues to the qualifiers. On the other hand, the presence of a few teams like Kryphsa FC, Gokulam Kerala and Travancore FC in the mix have also raised a few eyebrows for different reasons.

With all of these questions still unanswered and the number of cases increasing at an alarming rate, the postponement of the qualifiers was inevitable. However, female footballers in India anyway do not get the exposure and game-time they need in a season. In such a scenario, a little more planning and initiative could have helped avoid this precarious situation wherein it is our girls who stand to lose the most. This is all the more true because now the final round will most likely be postponed as well.

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