Caption: (L-R) Tabuan A head coach Stephen Ng and Bang Dalam FC coaches Mohammad Hishyam Tangkap and Mohammad Thariman Hj Ali during a press conference for the NFABD Under-16 Elite Youth Cup at NFABD House today. Reigning champions Tabuan A and Bang Dalam FC will meet each other in the first game of the NFABD Under-16 Elite Youth Cup tomorrow morning. Picture: Courtesy of NFABD
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) Under-16 Elite Youth Cup will kick off tomorrow morning with four matches scheduled.
Defending champions Tabuan A and newcomers Bang Dalam FC will contest at NFABD House's Artificial Turf while Projek Ikan Pusu (PIP) play Rimba Star at the Bengkurong Community Field.
Tabuan B will take on Murai Junior FC at the Sg Kebun Sports Complex Field A while BTC Red Star and Tabuan C face off at the Sg Kebun Sports Complex Field B.
All games are scheduled for 8.30am.
Speaking at a press conference at NFABD House earlier, Tabuan A head coach Stephen Ng said that the league will help the long-term development of grassroots football in Brunei.
“FIFA are helping us to organise the NFABD Under-16 Elite Youth Cup and the NFABD Under-16 Youth League for us to develop football in the country, especially for our age group teams which are playing in regional competitions,” said Ng.
“We are using these games to build the team and to scout for talented players to represent the country.
“This group of players were playing as Tabuan B last year and they started training together when they were at the Under-13 age group in 2015. They were third in the NFABD Under-16 Elite Youth Cup last year, and that’s a good achievement considering they were all Under-14 and playing in an Under-16 competition,” he added of the team which is currently leading the NFABD Under-16 Youth League.
The current group of players was brought together in 2015 with the long-term aim of training for the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Under-15 Championship in Thailand in July and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Under-16 Championship qualifiers in September – the venue of which is yet to be decided.
On the other hand, Bang Dalam's team was created in November and is made up of players from schools in Tutong and those who attended trials held by the club.
“They are all new players and we created this team to give them exposure and broaden their thinking,” said Bang Dalam’s Mohammad Hishyam Tangkap, who is training the team with Mohammad Thariman Hj Ali.
“We have gone through strong physical and mental training since then, and we have seen a lot of improvements. They know their mistakes and they know how to correct them,” he added.
The 11-team tournament - Besa FC, Kilanas FC and Parma Junior FC being the others - is expected to conclude on July 29.