For the members of the two under-17 inter-district level football teams of Vadodara city and Vadodara rural,the wait for certificate proving their participation at the tournament held at Rajpipla seems endless.
Several members of the teams,Vadodara city and rural,which were champion and runner-up,respectively,at the tournament organised more than a year ago in June 2011 by the Sports Authority of Gujarat (SAG),are still waiting for their certificates,even as the new tournament for 2012 will shortly begin.
The District Sports Office (DSO) of Rajpipla,which organised the final match,was supposed to give them certificates. After over a year of wait,the participants remain clueless as to when they will get certificates,as some want to avail scholarship and some need it for admission on sports quota in schools and colleges.
The certificates are important for the players as they prove their participation at the particular tournament and open avenues for various benefits like admission in colleges on sports quota and various scholarships, Jaideep Juvekar,a football coach at a school in Vadodara whose students were members of the runner-up team,said.
By denying them certificates,the players are being denied of all these benefits, he said. So far,only four out of 22 students who were part of the two teams have got the certificates,that too because they manage to make way into the under-17 national team.
As per the rules of the SAG,the District Sports Authority that hosts the game are the ones who are entrusted with the task of giving out certificates. Players say there are more to complain about than just delay in distribution of certificates.
The department does not provide proper allowance for transportation and accommodation and venues where matches are held are mostly ill-maintained. The players do not even get proper kits to play or practice, said another physical instruction teacher Mahendra Bisht.
Football coach with SAG,Chandrashekhar Solanki,said,The players look forward to such certificates of appreciation that they like to showcase and use for different benefits. Delay in getting certificates may affect their motivation and affect the overall health of the football sports in the state, he said.
Vadodara district sports officer Rajesh Vasava said preparing certificates take months before they are dispatched to players. Also,we have limited staff and we have to organise several games,so it naturally takes time, Vasava said.