In a bid to discourage the trend of over-age players in local tournaments, the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) has decided to take strict measures to bring an end to this common practice.
The development comes after the PFF handed out a six-month ban to Muslim FC’s Esmatullah and Chaman FC’s Hameed Khan after the pair faked their ages to participate in an U22 tournament. According to PFF Secretary Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi, the federation is now listing each player, starting at the junior level, to bring an end to the practice.
“We are sick of this, people don’t even consider it cheating,” Lodhi told The Express Tribune. “As the federation, it’s our job to look out for this. We have to set up a system. Each player is listed from junior level and the ones that aren’t will have to submit documents. Another solution is to make a disciplinary committee that can deal with these matters. This trend has gone on for too long and it’s just plain fraud. After the Chaman incident, we’re going to keep a close watch at this.”
According to Lodhi, the federation is introducing a computerised system that will also see each player listed with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). The process will help the federation in sending deserving and eligible players to international tournaments and prevent embarrassment.
He said that the age-limit is the first thing that tournament directors and managers should check, adding that cheating will result in heavy sanctions.
“We believe in punishing these people so that others are discouraged. I know the age-limit rule is violated in every other sport but the PFF is now adopting a strict policy against it. We will not tolerate this. These two players and punishing their manager is the first step and it will have a positive impact on domestic football.”
Published in The Express Tribune, July 26th, 2012.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ