By : Gurumapa
It is welcome news to hear that slowly but steadily, Women’s Football is gaining a positive momentum in Nepal. We are going to witness the 14th Womens Football starting from 14th of July which is going to be held in Chandranigahapur and Simara.
Until recently, women’s sports events were a “once in blue moon” occasions; but hopefully, this will probably be one of the many events to come in the near future for Nepalese women in continuous succession.
The event could not have come at a better time than this. This tournament will give the ladies a good dose of competitive football and the selectors will have a great opportunity to choose the best possible team to send to Srilanka for the 2nd SAFF women’s championship.
The Nepalese women’s team reached the finals of the last edition in Bangladesh, only to lose out to India. But they were impressive throughout that tournament, marching their way into the finals by inflicting heavy defeats on their opponents. And I am confident that we can do even better this time and come back home with the trophy and the title if we approach this tournament positively.
Women’s football has largely been a neglected sport in most parts of the globe; even countries in developed west have failed to give priority to this aspect of football when compared to men’s football. Nepal is no exception to it. The opportunities are far and few and the prospect of carving out a long term career in football for the ladies is very bleak.
But this very setback could be a blessing in disguise, inspiring our ladies to prove their worth and do the nation proud. Good performance in July and September could rush in a new era for ladies football in Nepal.
The recent trend has shown that football is slowly starting to grab the attention of corporate sponsors. Nepal is slowly pacing itself towards strong professional football where the future looks good, at least for the men for now. If we could just shift a little attention of the authorities and sponsors towards women’s football, I am super confident that we can achieve the height of footballing glory that the men’s team has so far failed to attain.
The Japanese women’s team became the first Asian team last year to win the Women’s World Cup by beating USA. The Japanese Men’s team, in contrast, have only managed to reach the round of 16’s in the World Cup, which they did in their home soil in 2002. The Nepalese women’s team should take this as a positive example and strive to achieve the same result in the SAFF championship as the Japanese did in the World Cup.
Time is also ripe for ANFA to start focussing seriously in women’s football and to focus on giving the ladies the opportunities that they have been deprived of so far. It could start by giving women a professional league of their own, a sort of Martyrs Memorial League for Women, where they could practice their trade to earn a living with dignity. A professional league for women will certainly do no harm to ANFA or the country as a whole.
We are still in the starting phase of women’s football in Nepal but already the signs look good for this aspect of the game in Nepal; we have all the support we could want from the crowds, we have some of the craziest fans of football fans in the world, we have sponsors who have slowly started focussing on the game and we have scores of ladies all over the country, aspiring to work hard to achieve their dream of playing football and representing their nation in the international stage.
All that is needed is a lot of positive attitude from all the concerned parties and some optimistic, as well as visionary management of women’s game within the country. There is certainly no doubt that the women’s football in Nepal is heading towards the road to success and glory.
Lets hear it for the ladies.
Hip Hip.... Hurray
Hip Hip.... Hurray...
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is a regular columnist of GoalNepal.com