The All India Football Federation (AIFF) Women’s Committee, led by chairperson Sara Pilot, met through a video call on Friday to discuss a number of topics including the postponed FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.
Besides AIFF General Secretary Kushal Das, other members – Sudeshna Mukherjee, Shabana Rabbani, Anjali Shah, Madhureemaraje Chhatrapati and Shama Mohamed – attended the meeting.
Welcoming everyone to AIFF‘s “first-ever online Women’s Committee Meeting,” Sara said: “It’s nice to be meeting with everyone though personally I feel it would have been more exciting to meet in person. Globally, the sporting action has been hit hard, but we need to stay optimistic, and wait for the action to resume back.”
The Committee discussed the new window for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup, which is now slated from February 17 to March 7, 2021.
The General Secretary informed that the “new dates were chosen by the FIFA Committee,” whereupon all members stayed appreciative of the age-group being kept the same despite the competition schedule being postponed by three months.
Abhishek Yadav, Director, National Teams, apprised the Committee about the current schedule of the Women’s U-17 World Cup probable all of whom are presently in their respective homes courtesy the COVID-19 pandemic.
“But even as the girls are not being able to train physically, the technical staff are conducting online fitness sessions, and even theoretical ones. All of the players have been provided individual programmes and are being monitored regularly, the reports of which are also being shared,” Yadav added.
“The coach is satisfied with what the girls are doing, and are supposed to do. The support staff is keeping the players motivated,” Das said.
The AIFF is waiting for ‘further directives’ from the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for the resumption of the training.
“With respect to the girls resuming training and re-assembling in the camp in Goa, we are awaiting further directives from the MYAS,” Yadav informed.
“The U-17 tri-nation tournament involving Sweden and Thailand has been a big learning experience for our girls. Such matches help in building up the self-confidence of the team and improve further from thereon,” he added.
Indian women’s team are currently placed at 55th spot in the FIFA team rankings.
Yadav also made a mention of the national team captain Ashalata Devi having been nominated for the ‘AFC Player of the Year,’ which was a “huge motivation” for all other players.
Indu Chowdhury briefed the Committee about the success of the Hero Indian Women’s League, and also the Khelo India Girls Football League.