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Soccer league kicks off

Fifa fanatics, here’s a country cousin to cheer for too.

Jamshedpur Sporting Association (JSA) football league kick-started on Tuesday with a Super division match between Thakkar Bappa Club and Narwapahar Sporting Association at Gopal Maidan.

Thirty-four outfits of the city will vie for top honours during the over-month-long tourney with teams in Super, Premier and A divisions.

Legendary yesteryear striker Jamshid Nassiri inaugurated the tournament in the presence of a host of soccer functionaries, including JSA football panel chairman Ramesh Mehta, secretary Rajiv Mishra, executive committee members and office-bearers of participating soccer clubs.

Nassiri, who said he was highly impressed with the gathering, advised children in the Under-10 and Under-12 age groups honing skills at a special programme launched by Tata Football Academy, to “take the game seriously”.

“We are happy that teams accepted our invitation and hope the tournament is a grand success,” said Charles Borromeo, head of Tata Steel sports department.

There are nine teams each in Super and Premier divisions, while A division boasts 16 outfits.

Super division matches started from Tuesday. Premier and A division fixtures will start from June 12 and June 16.

Super division matches will be played at Gopal Maidan. Armoury grounds and Gopal Maidan have been earmarked for A division encounters and Keenan Stadium will host Premier division outings. The event will end on July 27.