Gangtok, Sikkim

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Warm welcome for World Cup Sikkim futsal players

Warm welcome for World Cup Sikkim futsal players
Sat, Dec 1, 2018

KUNAL RAI

RANGPO: Three Sikkimese players and a coach who were part of the Indian futsal team that competed in under-20 Futsal World Cup in Columbia returned home today after making the nation and the State proud. They were received by Futsal Association of Sikkim (FAS) along with their parents and friends at Rangpo today.
The coach was Bishal Chettri while the players were Ashwin Rai, Boxer Pradhan and Sangay Choppel Bhutia.
Coach Bishal Chettri stated the experience of the World Cup was really great as they have come to know the game closely. He said India had registered with the AMF few years back and this year they received World Cup berth without any qualification matches.
Chettri said Sikkim players played brilliantly in the tournament. All the nine goals the Indian team scored in the tournament came from three Sikkim players.
Ashwin Rai scored a total of five goals, Boxer Pradhan scored three goals and Sangay Choppel Bhutia scored one goal. The performance of the Sikkim players was appreciated by the other nations that participated in the tournament, said Chettri.  
He mentioned that a total of 12 players along with a coach and a manager represented the nation in the U-20 Futsal World Cup where they played four matches out of which three were qualifying matches and one for position.  It was for the first time that India was participating in the Futsal World Cup.
One of the players, Ashwin Rai shared that it was a great learning experience for them. “The game of futsal we play here and out there was completely different. Futsal and football are quite a similar but the rules and techniques in futsal are tougher than football,” he said.
“Playing in the World Cup wearing national jersey was a great feeling and for the opportunity, we the representative of Sikkim in the Indian squad for U-20 Futsal World Cup would like to express our gratitude to Futsal Association of Sikkim. We are really indebted,” Rai added.
Rai added that they are hopeful of getting more chance to play in senior level tournaments for the country.
Their families were proud of the duo playing for country in the Futsal World Cup. “Their performance was outstanding but there is still a lot to learn. We also thank Futsal Association of Sikkim for all the opportunities extended to our children and to all the relatives for their blessings,” one of the parents said.
Futsal Association of Sikkim general secretary Benoy Upreti congratulated all the players and coach for their outstanding performance in the futsal world cup. “The performance of our players was beyond expectation; they played really well which we are really proud of. Above all it was only the players from Sikkim who scored in the world cup matches and it has made us and our association feel really happy,” he said.
“FAS was formed last year by like-minded doctors and engineers of Sikkim who out of fitness started playing futsal and today it has grown to be proud association that too in a short span of time,” said Upreti. He said they also plan to call on the Chief Minister along with the players who played in the World Cup.


Area: 7096 Sq Km
Capital:Gangtok
Altitude: 5,840 ft
Population: 6.10 Lakhs
Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 ft. to over 28,509 ft above sea level
Climate:
Summer: Max- 21°C ; Min- 13°C
Winter: Max- 13°C ; Min- 0.48°C
Rainfall: 325 cm per annum
Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi