Vancouver soccer tournament sacrifices Canada Soccer membership for Tibetan women team’s participation to be possible. A Tibetan women’s soccer team is all set to participate in the Vancouver International Soccer Festival from July 7. This has come out as a huge consolation and inspiration to the young team 14 Tibetan girls as they were denied US visas to take part in the Dallas Cup in March this year.
“The Vancouver International Soccer Festival has cut ties with the B.C. Soccer Association over the participation of a Tibetan women’s soccer team in next month’s tournament.” said the news report in the CBC where B.C. Soccer Association is the provincial arm of Canada Soccer which is a member of FIFA, the international body of the game soccer.
Adri Hamael, founder of the Vancouver International Soccer Festival stepped in when the Tibetan girls where distressed before three months when they were denied a visa by US embassy in New Delhi for them to participate in the Dalla Cup.
“I was really angered by the story, ” Hamael said. “I mean how threatening are 14 Tibetan women to the United States? Then immediately my anger turned into a thought — I have to get this team to Canada.”
The girls are expected to arrive in Canada on June 29 and they are also set to make their international debut in the game when Tibet faces the Canadian side in the tournament on July 7 this year. However, the Tibetan team’s participation does not seem to have been well received by everyone.
“Tournament founder Adri Hamael says the Canadian Soccer Association has suddenly started asking for all kinds of additional paperwork, including travel documents for the Tibetan players and a copy of the tournament rules. ” according to the report. He explained this as a very ‘strange’ demand and does not align with the core values of VISF.
This scrutiny from Canada soccer which questioned Tibetan women team’s participation in the Vancouver tournament led the VISF to withdraw its membership from Canada Soccer and B.C. Soccer Association so that the Tibetan team can actually play this time! The tournament founder also confirmed that the decision will not impact the tournament which is set to begin from July 7.