Players in action during a match at Jamshedpur. Telegraph picture
Referees and coaches at the Jamshedpur Sporting Association (JSA) football league — to start on June 10 — will do more than blow the whistle or devise strategies. They will also save lives, if needed.
In the first initiative of its kind, referees and coaches of 34 affiliated JSA clubs will undergo training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) under Dr Shashi Kant, an anaesthetist from Tata Main Hospital (TMH).
“The CPR training for referees and coaches has been lined up at the JRD Tata Sports Complex from 4.30 pm onwards on June 6. We have also included team managers and captains for the session,” said Avinash Kumar, the newly nominated secretary of the JSA.
The reason behind this seriousness is logical. Football is a fast and furious game where players may meet with injury.
“It is a contact sport with high speed involved. There is possibility of serious injuries during matches. However, JSA referees and coaches have the least knowledge about tackling emergency situations. This training aims at equipping them with necessary knowledge of how to handle emergency situations,” Kumar said.
The JSA league — one of eastern India’s most awaited soccer tourneys — will kick-start on June 10 on Bistupur’s Gopal Maidan. Thirty-four teams — 10 each in super and premier divisions and 14 in A-division — will vie for top honours during the league.
While A-division encounters have been slotted at the Armoury Ground from June 12, premier division matches will be held at the ISWP Sports Complex and JRD Tata Sports Complex from June 16
However, there is a hitch when it comes to hosting premier division matches.
The 10 participant teams in the division don’t favour ISWP due to its remote location. But Tata Steel sports department’s proposal to teams to play at the JRD Tata Sports Complex in the morning or in the afternoon — it does not want its evening activities to be hampered — also has very few takers.
“JRD stadium or not, with temperatures around 45°C, there is no question of playing in the morning. It is impossible to turn up at 3pm for any match. These are health hazards for the players. It is impossible for any outfit to play under the sun in these scorching conditions,” one of the senior functionaries of a club said.