KARACHI: Pakistan will face defending champions India in the group stage of the Street Child World Cup (SCWC) that will begin on March 27 in Brazil.
A few months ahead of the Fifa World Cup, the SCWC will feature teams from 20 countries in the seven-a-side tournament.
The event is organised in collaboration with the Amos trust, while the purpose of the tournament is to give identity to the children living on the streets and to spread awareness about homelessness.
The nine-member Pakistan squad will be taking part in the competition for the first time.
Pakistan is slotted in Group Three with Mauritius, Kenya, US and India, while Tanzania, Burundi, Argentina, Nicaragua and Philippines form Group Two. South Africa, Liberia, Egypt, Brazil and Indonesia will play in Group One.
The participants have expressed their excitement in participating at the World Cup, stating that it is overwhelming for them to represent Pakistan internationally.
Their coach, Abdul Rashid, backed this by telling The Express Tribune, “I know that we’ve worked very hard and my players will perform to their best ability. I know India is also in our group, but the fact is that at the moment we haven’t seen how these teams play.
“I know one thing, and that is that my players have the capability to play well. There are many expectations and hopes attached with this competition. The players want to deliver and there are a lot of prayers with us.”
Rashid, along with the captain Samir Ahmed, vice-captain Auranzeb, and seven other players have been training at the Sharafi Goth football ground for a month.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 22nd, 2014.