The Indian team for Mini Football is all set to compete for the coveted WMF title to be held in Kiev, Ukraine from 11-15th August 2021. It is being organized by the Minifootball Federation of Ukraine in collaboration with the Department of Sports under the aegis of the World Minifootball Federation.
The Indian team faced logistic difficulties which were duly sorted with the help of Ukraine Airlines who have made it possible for the teams to participate. The Women's World Cup is going to be held for the first time in minifootball. The MiniFootball Association of India team is participating in both the categories of the World Cup. The best mature football players have been selected as a team across India from a range of youthful and experienced players.
The first women's MAI Indian team will be led by Anjali Hindalgekar (Karnataka) and the MAI U23 men's team will be led by Prince Bajaj (Delhi). 16 countries from across the world will participate in the U23 men's category and 8 nations in women's category will fight for the top spot. India is the only country which will participate in both the categories. The team will depart from Delhi airport on August 10, 2021 with the help and support of their travel partner, Ukraine Airlines.
“Mini Football is still at a very nascent stage competitively in the country today but it is growing at such a rapid speed because of the work that MAI is putting into the sport. It has been such a steep rise which has allowed us to qualify and participate at every WMF World Cup since its inception," said Mr. Vithal Shirgaonkar, Vice President, World MiniFootball Federation.
"There has been a lot of work behind the scenes and we are positive about the success that is yet to be achieved. We thank and appreciate all the support we have got over the past few years and special thanks to Ukraine Airlines for making sure that our players are safely travelling to the World Cup."
Mini Football is a variation of association football, in which each team fields five players (four outfield players and a goalkeeper). Other differences from football include a smaller pitch, smaller goals, and a reduced game duration. Matches are played indoors, or outdoors on artificial grass pitches that may be enclosed within a barrier or "cage" to prevent the ball from leaving the playing area and keep the game constantly flowing.
“It's an honour to represent my country at this stage. It's a dream for everyone to represent INDIA at an international stage. Being a senior player in the team, I am proud to take this responsibility of my country and will not disappoint. All the team members are in a positive mindset since we were selected in the team and have built good chemistry.” Anjali Hindalgekar, Captain, Women’s Team, MiniFootball India signed off.