Colombo: The U-14 Girls’ Festival of Football 2011 Games officially opened with a colourful ceremony held at the Police Sports Park, here in the Sri Lankan capital, on March 10, 2011.
The opening ceremony lasted for about 15 minutes with a speech by Olivia Gamage, the Chairperson of the Women’s Committee of Football Federation Sri Lanka (FFSL), followed by a national dance performance by Sri Lankan boys and girls.
The VIPs present also presented flowers to all the six teams taking part in the matches to be held also at the Police Sports Park.
Attending the opening ceremony were chief guest Hemanthi Weerasekena, the wife of FFSL President Sarath Weerasekera, Deputy Director of Physical Education and Sports (Ministry of Education) Nihal Fernando, the Ambassador of Palestine to Sri Lanka, the First Secretary to the Ambassador of Iran to Sri Lanka, FFSL staff, players’ parents and supporters.
In her speech, Gamage said it was the third time the FFSL was given the rights to host the AFC Festival of Football for Girls for West, South and Central Asia.
“We warmly welcome all the six teams’ players and officials to the island of Sri Lanka, and a special welcome to the new participant of the Festival, Palestine. We hope that all the girls will enjoy the games and also their stay here in Colombo,” she said.
The results of the matches in the morning of the opening are as follows:
SRI1 vs IND1 : 2 – 0
IRN1 vs JOR1 : 3 – 0
PAL1 vs BHU1 : 1 – 0
SRI2 vs IRN2 : 0 – 2
IND2 vs PAL2 : 9 – 0
A total of 17 green cards was issued in the first five matches which showed excellent fair play from all the girls who played with a high spirit and enjoyed their games.
The Festival in Sri Lanka is ongoing from March 1 to 14, while the second instalment of the Festival will take place in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, from June 1 to 14, which will be the place of action for girls from the East and Asean regions.