The technical meeting of the 5th Khalid Bin Hamad Futsal Championship for Youth Centres, People with Disabilities and Girls was held yesterday evening at the headquarters of the Ministry of Youth and Sports in Seef District.
The championship will be held between 24 July and 23 August, under the patronage of HH Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the First Deputy President of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, President of Bahrain Athletics Association, Honourary President of Bahrain Disabled Sports Federation. It will be held at the Isa Sports City in Riffa, organized by the Ministry of Youth and Sports Affairs in cooperation with the media office of His Highness Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa under the slogan #Meeting_of_Generations. The establishment of the championship is one of His Highness’ noble initiatives in support of youth in sports and humanitarian fields.
Speaking during the meeting were the Director of the league Ali Al-Arabi, the Chairman of the Technical Committee and Referees Ali Said, and Chairman of the Committee of Disabilities Ali Al-Nabhan, while the meeting was conducted by media person Hussain Said.
The meeting was largely attended by representatives of the participating teams, which includes 36 youth centres out of 36 official centres representing the various towns and villages of the Kingdom of Bahrain. The large participation is a continuation of the competition, after the previous edition included 32 youth centres.
The meeting witnessed the announcement of the championship’s surprise this year, the addition of a girls’ league. In a qualitative and novel addition to the competition, six teams will participate representing the centres. The teams will be divided into two groups, out of which two teams qualify for the semi-finals, reaching the final match, and the third and fourth place determining match.
A bigger opportunity
During the meeting, it was announced that people with disabilities were given a bigger opportunity to participate in this year’s edition. Eight teams will be divided into two groups, reaching the semi-finals and the final match, then the third and fourth places.
The Chairman of the Disability Committee, Ali Al-Nabhan, spoke about the participating teams and said that they will represent: Bahrain Disability Challenging Youth Society, Friendship Society For The Blind, two teams for the Deaf Committee, Bahrain Deaf Society, Special Olympics and the Basketball Team for People with Disabilities.
Al-Nabhan extended his gratitude to His Highness Shaikh Khalid Bin Hamad Al-Khalifa for his various humanitarian initiatives and the Minister of Youth and Sports Hisham Bin Mohammed Al-Jowder for his support of these events. He also conveyed the greetings of the President of the Bahrain Disabled Sports Federation Shaikh Mohammed bin Daij Al Khalifa.
League Director Ali Al-Arabi talked about the competition’s multiple objectives.
“The discovery of different futsal talents in the categories of youth centres, people with disabilities and girls is one of the most important results of the championship,” he explained.
He added, “The championship will be an opportunity to introduce youth to the importance of sports by honing their football talents. Additionally, it is an opportunity to integrate the category of people with disabilities in a humanitarian step linked to sports.”
Al-Arabi clarified that the Organizing Committee has set June 20 as a deadline to receive the list of the players of the participating teams, indicating that organizers will provide full sports uniforms for all participating teams, in addition to an additional precautionary uniform in case of similar colours.
He explained that this year, the championship will allocate large financial prizes to the winning teams.
Al-Arabi pointed out that this allocation comes within the plan of action towards raising the technical and competitive levels of competition among participants, in an atmosphere of high sportsmanship. The value of the awards will be announced in the draw.
Chairman of the technical committee and referees Ali Said explained that the youth centres will be divided into 8 groups.
He pointed out that four of them will play in four teams, while the other four will be split into five teams.
Two teams from each group will qualify for the round of 16, then the quarter-finals, reaching the semi-finals, then the final, including the match to determine the third and fourth positions.
Said affirmed that the great attendance by the representatives of the participating teams reflects the keenness and commitment of all to the success of the event.
He pointed out that the matches will be refereed by the Bahrain Football Association.
The Organizing Committee set 24 July as a date for the start of the championship, with the preliminary round including 4 matches per day. The preliminary round will continue until 8 August.
The eighth-finals will start on August 9 and close at 12, while the quarterfinals will take place on August 13 and 14, the semi-final on August 18.
August 15 and 16 will be the preliminary rounds for persons with disabilities, 17 and 18 the girls’ preliminaries, while the semi-finals for both categories will be held on August 19.
August 20 will be the date for the third and fourth place matches for all categories, and August 23 will be the date of the final matches for all the mentioned categories as well.
During the meeting, the championship’s regulation list was distributed to the representatives of the participating teams, containing 19 different clauses pertaining to the championship’s various aspects.
The audience discussed many organizational and technical matters with the speakers, and the speakers answered questions put from the participating teams.