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The South Zone qualifiers for the AIFF National Football Championship for Santosh Trophy 2017-18 will be held at the Bangalore Football Stadium from January 17, 2018 to January 22, 2018.
Eight teams divided into two groups will play a round-robin league and the respective group winners will advance to the final stage of the Santosh Trophy – the premier inter-state championship, which has been running since its inception in 1941.
Apart from hosts Karnataka, the other teams in the tournament include Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Pondicherry, Andaman & Nicobar and Services. Karnataka, Services, Telangana and Pondicherry are in Group A while Group B comprises of Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Andaman & Nicobar.
“We thank the All India Football Federation (AIFF) for giving the Karnataka State Football Association (KSFA) the opportunity to stage the South Zone leg of the most prestigious national football championship. We are confident of organizing a stellar event and seek the support of the football fans in the city and state to watch some of the best football talent in the coming tournament,” said Mr. N. A. Harris, President of the KSFA.
“Karnataka has always been a powerhouse of Indian football and we strongly feel that hosting this event will be a huge boost for players from the state at a time when the game is gaining immense popularity all over the country. We thank the sponsors who readily agreed to support this esteemed tournament at short notice.” Drawing a focus on involving the general public, Mr. N. A. Haris quoted, “We are going all out to ensure the event draws full houses on all match days. Certain sections of the stands will house spectators with entry tickets of Rs 100 and Rs 50, while a large section of the stands will be open to the public free of cost. All arrangements have been made according to the requirement of AIFF and all officials named by the AIFF will be supervising and officiating the matches.”
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