Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], Jan 24 : The fourth edition of the Indian Women’s league will kick-off at the Bengaluru Football Stadium on January 24.
The 21-day long tournament will culminate with the finals being played on February 14. The first-ever rolling trophy for the Indian Women’s league was unveiled in a glittering ceremony in the city on Thursday.
Captains of the team representing all the 12 teams from 10 states were present along with Sunando Dhar, CEO, League, AIFF, Satya Narayan, General Secretary, KSFA and Maymol Rocky, head coach, Indian Women’s national team.
Kryphsa FC and Kickstart FC will lock horns in the first match later in the day. The 12 teams vying for the top honours in the Indian Women’s League have been divided into two groups of six teams each in Group A and Group B.
Group A would consist of Kickstart FC (Karnataka), FC Kolhapur (Maharashtra), Krypsha FC (Manipur), BBK DAV FC (Punjab), Sethu FC (Tamil Nadu) and Baroda FA ( Gujarat) while Group B shall comprise of Kenkre FC (Maharashtra), Gokulam Kerala FC (Kerala), Odisha Police FC (Odisha), Bangalore United FC (Karnataka), Sreebhumi FC (West Bengal), Bidesh XI FC (Goa).
Two games will be played on a day at 12 pm and 3 pm and would be streamed live and exclusive on the Indian Football Team Facebook page.
Each team would play a total of 5 matches in the round-robin league and the top two teams from each group will make their way to the semi-finals. The semi-final winners thereafter would play the finals on February 14.
Over Rs 20 lakhs of the cash prize is due to be won in the 4th edition of the Indian Women’s League. The Champions shall walk away with the rolling trophy and medals along with a cash prize of Rs 10 Lakhs, while the runners-up will get richer by Rs 5 lakhs.
The tournament’s MVP (Most Valuable Player) would earn a total of Rs 1.25 lakhs, the best goalkeeper would get richer by Rs 1 lakh and the emerging player winner would earn Rs 75,000 from the tournament. The hero of the match for each game would earn an additional Rs 5,000.
This will also be the first time when a rolling trophy would be instituted for the Indian Women’s League. Elaborating further on this Sunando Dhar, CEO, Leagues from AIFF said, “A rolling trophy is something which always augurs well with players and the contest gets intense amongst them. To align the premier women’s league competition in India with other leagues, we have decided to shift to a running trophy this season and it’ll surely push the girls further to give an extra bit on the field to lift it on February 14.”
The garden city of Bengaluru becomes the fourth city to host the tournament after the previous three editions were held at New Delhi (2016-17), Shillong (2017-18) and Ludhiana (2018-19).
Eastern Sporting Union from Manipur emerged as the champions of inaugural edition before Rising Student’s Club from Odisha beat them in the final the following season (2017-18). In 2018-19, Sethu FC, the Tamil Nadu outfit, outplayed Manipur Police in the final to win their maiden IWL crown.