Village Voice News

“The most important thing is security,” says AIFF Secretary M Satyanarayan, explaining why he agreed to share the SAFF U19 Women’s Championship title

<p>India and Bangladesh shared the championship of the just finished SAFF U19 Women’s Championship in Bangladesh on Thursday, an unusual occurrence.</p>
<p>After normal play ended with the score knotted at 1, penalties were used to determine the tournament champion. Before the referee summoned both captains for a coin flip to determine the outcome of the game, both teams were able to convert all 11 of their spot kick attempts.</p>
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<p>The Indian girls believed they had won the event when the toss went their way, but after a protracted one-hour wait, the referee declared that the teams would divide the honors.</p>
<p>As a consequence, something unexpected happened: the captains of the women’s teams from Bangladesh and India jointly raised the trophy.</p>
<p>The explosive scenario at the stadium in Bangladesh after the exhausting game was the reason for the authorities’ decision to divide the trophy, according to AIFF acting secretary M Satyanarayan, who made the announcement after the game.</p>
<p>He continued by saying that the players’ safety and security came first and that there was a segment of the home crowd who were making a disturbance.</p>
<p>“Even though we were declared the winners after the coin flip, we chose to grant the officials’ request to share the trophy because things were getting heated and some of the home fans were causing trouble,” Satyanarayan said.</p>
<p>“The AIFF decided to grant the organizers’ request because player and team official safety is our top priority,” he said.</p>
<p>The acting secretary said that before determining whether to file a formal protest, the AIFF would wait for a comprehensive report on the match from the head coach and his staff.</p>
<p>“We won’t make a decision regarding a formal protest until our team manager and head coach have returned and given us a thorough report,”</p>
<p>Arunava Bhattacharya, the match commissioner for FIFA and the AFC, who was also at the game but wasn’t there in an official position, said he wouldn’t make any formal comments about the match but felt that the penalty shootout should have gone on until we had a winner.</p>
<p>“I am not in a position to make formal comments on the game. But according to the law, punishments and unexpected deaths must go on until a conclusion is reached, said Bhattacharya.</p>