Pasighat readies for SWNFC final amid concern over rain playing spoilsport

Staff Reporter
PASIGHAT, Sep 23: Twenty-time national women’s football champion Manipur will take on the Railways for the coveted Senior Women’s National Football Championship (SWNFC) title on 24 September.
The match is likely to be played either at the Kiyit ground or at the College of Horticulture & Forestry (CHF) ground here in East Siang district, depending on the condition of the grounds.
Orin Lego, the coordinator of the Arunachal Pradesh Football Association (APFA), said that as of now the CHF ground has been finalized, with the Kiyit ground as the alternative venue, depending on whether or not it rains on the day of the match.
The Pasighat stadium, which has a seating capacity for 10,000 fans and was supposed to be the venue of the final, remains muddy, so it has been ruled out.
With incessant rain prior to the final, and more rain predicted for Tuesday, the APFA is working late into the night, preparing the Kiyit and the CHF grounds for the final match.
APFA president Kipa Ajay is worried that the ground may not be able to host so many fans. He expects that 10,000 fans will turn up for the final.
The average turnout has been more than 3000 fans for each match, Ajay said.
Defending champion Manipur defeated Tamil Nadu 5-0 in their semifinal match at the CHF ground on Sunday. The Railways beat Odisha 3-1 in the first semifinal.
Railways striker Kamala Devi and Manipur’s Bala Devi have scored 20 goals each in five matches.
Manipur remains the crowd favourite.