Shillong: The Meghalaya football team that will participate in the Dr T Ao Trophy 2020 left Shillong today for Nagaland, where the tournament will be held.
Meghalaya have been clubbed with Sikkim, Assam and Mizoram in Group B of the eight-team competition. Group A consists of hosts Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Tripura. All matches will be held at the IG Stadium in Kohima.
The 20-member state squad will be captained by Brolington Warlarpih, with Kenstar Kharshong as the vice-captain. The coach is Khlain Pyrkhat Syiemlieh and the manager is M Warbah.
Meghalaya will play their first match against Mizoram (21 January), followed by Sikkim (23 January) and Assam (25 January). The top two teams from each group will progress to the semifinals.
The two semifinals will be held on 27 January, followed by the third-place match and final on 28 January.
At the send-off today were Meghalaya Football Association Treasurer Wanshanbor Kharkrang, senior cell convener Hering Shangpliang and senior cell member Cliff Nongrum.
Kharkrang wished the players a safe journey and urged the boys to put aside any club rivalry and work together as a team for the state. Shangpliang, meanwhile, urged them to remain disciplined at all times as they are representing Meghalaya.
The late Talimeren Ao, for whom the tournament is named, is best known as the captain of the first Indian football team following independence and he led the side at the 1948 Olympic Games.
Brolington Warlarpih (C), Kenstar Kharshong (VC), Frolicson Dkhar, Siwel Rymbai, Kynsaibor Lhuid, Samuel Lyngdoh Kynshi, Atlanson Kharmaw, Aenam Jyrwa, Shano Tariang, Batifar Swer, Raikutshisha Buam, Nikelson Bina, Melvin Warjri, Dawanchwa Challam, Stephanson Pale, Justly Sungoh, Batskhem Tariang, Belton Lartang, Denelson Pyngrope, Kitboklang Pale
Khlain Pyrkhat Syiemlieh (coach), M Warbah (manager), Dapmon Tariang (assistant coach), Lambok Lyngdoh (physio)
vs Mizoram, 4:00pm, 21 January
vs Sikkim, 2:00pm, 23 January
vs Assam, 2:00pm, 25 January