A second half injury time goal by Mohammed Azam Khan ensured that Minerva Public School, Mohali, Punjab were crowned champions in the 62nd Subroto Cup Sub-Junior (U 14) Boys Inter School International Football Tournament defeating Chawngfianga Middle School, Saiden, Kolasib, Mizoram 1-0 in an exciting final played here at the Army Service Corps Centre. This is the first time in the history of the tournament that a school representing Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) is winning the Subroto Cup. Air Marshal R. Radhish AVSM, VM, Air Officer Commanding-In-Chief, Training Command who had kindly consented to be the Chief Guest, presented the trophy to the winning team.
Speaking on the occasion, Air Marshal R. Radhish AVSM, VM, Air Officer Commanding-In-Chief said, “Subroto Cup is conducted every year with an aim to promote the game of football at the grassroot level and with a vision to inculcate sportsman spirit and provide opportunity to the school children across the country to showcase their talent at the national platform. The tournament is an ideal arena for the children to enhance their playing skills and to interact with each other culturally and socially. My heartiest congratulations to the winners and also to all the other teams which participated. I also congratulate the organising committee for the successful and impeccable conduct of the tournament.”
There were several awards including cash prizes, given out at the end of the final. The Late Group Captain V.N Singh Memorial Fair Play Trophy and cheque of Rs.50,000 was presented to Mother’s Pride Public School, Maloti, Himachal Pradesh by Air Commodore Sarabjit Singh, Air Officer Commanding, AFS Jalahalli & Chairman, Organising Committee. Vivek Tanti of Bampatner Bengenabari H.S.S, Sibsagar, Assam was awarded the Safe Hand Trophy for the best goalkeeper and a cheque of Rs.25,000. The Best Coach cheque of Rs. 25,000 was awarded to Ashu Kashyap of Minerva Public School. Chawngfianga Middle School, Saiden, Kolasib, Mizoram was awarded a cheque of Rs.40,000 for the Best School. Khangembam Bibash of Minerva Public School was awarded the Best Player Trophy and a cheque of Rs.40,000 by Air Vice Marshal R.V Ramkishore VSM, Senior Officer in Charge (Administration), Training Command.
The Runner’s Up of the tournament received Rs.1, 25,000 along with the runners up trophy, which was presented by Air Marshal S.K Indoria AVSM, VM, SASO, Training Command. The Winners of the Subroto Cup were presented the Winner’s Trophy by the Chief Guest along with a cheque of Rs. 2, 50,000.
Chawngfianga Middle School, Saiden, Kolasib, Mizoram – 0
Minerva Public School, Mohali, Punjab – 1 (Mohammed Azam Khan 50+2)
The first half was closely contested by the both team’s midfield who were trying to create chances for the attackers. The first real chance came for Minerva Public School as Malsom Tuboi found space on the edge of the box. The midfielder’s shot did not test the keeper as it flew past the post. Chawngfianga Middle School started to control the midfield as Minerva were restricted to counter attacks. The school from Mizoram were looking dangerous in the attacking front, with Malsawmkima controlling the game from the centre of the park. His intelligent through ball found Isak Lalmalsawma, but the forward could not apply the finishing touches. Malsawmkima forced Minerva goalkeeper, Waikhom to a good save from a direct free kick. Mizoram continued in the same tempo as both teams went into the lemon break with the score goalless.
Mizoram had a glorious chance to open their account in the start of the second half from a corner. Malsawmkima rose high only to head it wide of the post. Isak Lalmalsawma tested the Minerva goal but was inches wide. The defining moment of the match, in fact the whole tournament came in the dying seconds of second half injury time. Khangembam’s cross from the left wing, found Mohammed Azam Khan inside the box. The forward rose high to head the ball which trickled inside the goal through the fingers of the Mizo keeper, Lalmuanpuia sending everyone into a frenzy.
A total of 21 teams participated in the Sub-Junior Boys (U 14) category of this edition’s Subroto Cup. A total of 16 teams were disqualified before the start of the tournament on the basis of the results of Skeletal Age Estimation Test, in which a minimum of four players were found to be overage in the disqualified teams according to the regulations of AIFF.