DHAKA, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today expressed the hope for a bright future of the country's football in the global sports arena.
Male and female players being groomed up through Bangabandhu Gold Cup and Bangamata Fazilutunnesa Mujib Gold Cup primary school football tournaments would take forward the country's football to a more successful position in the global arena in future, she hoped.
The Prime Minister was distributing awards among the winners of Bangabandhu Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament-2017 and Bangamata Fazilatunnesa Mujib Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament-2017 at Bangabandhu National Stadium here.
Sheikh Hasina said her government has attached special importance to sports and cultural activities as such pursuits can help children build their mental and physical health.
"We want to build this country. Our children are our future leaders. So we are giving special importance to sports and cultural activities as these events help them grow properly," she said.
"Sports and cultural activities can help children build their mental and physical health, learn discipline, perseverance and responsibility and tolerance," she added.
Sheikh Hasina along with her two grandchildren enjoyed the final match of the Bangamata Fazilutunnesa Mujib Primary School Football Tournament-2017 between Doharo Model Primary School of Shoilakupa Upazila in Jhenidah and Nandail Panchrukhi Govt Primary School of Mymenshingh from the VIP box of the gallery.
She said students of primary schools all over the country are taking part in these two football tournaments. A total of 10,99,611 female students participated in the Bangamata Fazilatunnesa Mujib Primary School Tournament Gold Cup while 10,99,696 students took part in the Bangabandhu Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament this year, she said.
"So many students never took part in these tournaments after their commencement in 2010 and 2011 respectively," she said adding that students' interest in the tournaments is growing every year.
Appreciating the participation of females in sports, the Prime Minister said female players have showed their competence in different sports.
The female team became champion in the Under-14 South Asia Football Tournament and runners up in the Championship Competition of Women in India, she said.
Most of the female players of the tournaments were groomed up through Bangamata Fazilatunnesa Mujib Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament, she added.
She hoped that the players who are being groomed up from the grassroots level through the tournaments would take Bangladesh Football to the world arena in future.
Minister for Primary and Mass Education Mustafizur Rahman also spoke on the occasion.
The Prime Minister adorned the players, coaches and team managers with medals and distributed cheques for prize money among the best players, highest goal scorers and players of the champion and runner up teams and players of the team that secured third position in the tournament.
Purbo Ujantia Govt Primary School, Pekua of Cox's Bazar district became champion defeating Bhulbaria Govt. Primary School of Satiya, Pabna in the Bangabandhu Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament-2017.
In the Bangamata Fazilutunnesa Mujib Gold Cup Primary School Football Tournament-2017, Dohara Model Primary School of Shoilakupa of Jhenaidah became champion defeating Panchrukhi Govt. Primary School of Nandail Upazila of Mymensingh district.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)