Three North-Eastern clubs Aizawl FC, Shillong Lajong, and Neroca FC saw their Under-13 players failing the bone determination test on Monday as India got yet another blow. Apart from them, Minerva Punjab also saw its Under-13 side fail the test as Ranjit Bajaj accused AIFF of being vindictive.
All the players who failed the bone determination test were eventually barred by AIFF from participating in the sub-junior U-13 Youth League with immediate effect. The four teams won’t be able to take part in the tournament if they don’t have the minimum number of players to participate.
“Minerva Punjab aside, most of the players from all the northeast teams failed the TW3 bone age determination test. They have been barred from taking further part in the competition,” said an AIFF official, reported PTI.
“A team can register as many as 35 to 40 players but it needs at least 18 players [who have passed the test] to be able to participate in the tournament,” he added.
Minerva Punjab has been in a constant fight with AIFF over the last one week after the board had allegedly forced the side out of the league by asking the Odisha Sports Authority not to give the club venue for their AFC Cup campaign.
The club owner has now stated that his players have been wrongly stopped from playing as he questioning the timing of all this and accusing the federation of being vindictive.
“Why are these things happening at the same time. Imposing a huge fine on my team, stopping my players from playing. Of course, they are being vindictive,” Bajaj said, reported PTI.
Punjab have done well of late as far as developing its youths was concerned as they won the U-13, U-15 and U-18 leagues last season. Bajaj further stated that the club had submitted the correct age certificates and passports of all their players, stating that if the federation had to make a move about it, it should have been six months ago and not now.