Controversy Mars 29th GCM Gold Cup Final

DHARAMSALA, 29 May: The final of the 29th GCM Gold Cup, which was supposed to take place on Tuesday afternoon at Hunsur Tibetan Settlement, has been overshadowed by controversy. Fans at the ground and those watching the live stream were left disappointed as the kickoff of the final match between Dhasa UTD FC and DYSA Mundgod was delayed and later postponed until Wednesday afternoon following allegations of Green Book forgery by players from Dhasa UTD FC.

While there is no official statement from the Tibetan National Sports Association (TNSA), a video clip circulating online late on Tuesday night features TNSA President Jangchup Gyaltsen announcing that the final match will now be held between Gulladhala FC and DYSA Mundgod at 2 PM on Wednesday. Based on this statement, Dhasa UTD FC faces a 10,000-rupee fine and a two-year ban from the tournament, while the players involved in the alleged forgery face a one-year ban.

Gulladhala FC, having lost their semi-final match against Dhasa UTD FC, automatically earned their berth in the final following the disqualification of Dhasa UTD FC. The tournament rules, established to address past incidents of forgery, were communicated to the management of the 16 participating teams before the tournament kicked off in Hunsur Rabgyaling on May 15th. However, many are questioning why the TNSA did not verify the Green Book credentials before the tournament began, as this situation has caused significant disruption.

In response to the allegations, Dhasa UTD FC has denied any wrongdoing. Speaking over the phone, Kalsang Tsering, the team manager, stated that the accusations of their players forging or submiting false documents are unfounded and lack merit. “Gulladhala FC raised the complaint, and we proved our players’ papers are proper. They suspected six players from our team, and their Green Books were checked by the finance department of the CTA on May 24th,” he said.

Kalsang Tsering also commented on the video where the TNSA president announced the rescheduled final. “We told the TNSA president the match couldn’t be postponed from Tuesday to Wednesday as our flight is on Wednesday,” he said. He categorically denied the allegations and stated that they did everything they could to prove their authenticity, including producing the Green Books of the players under suspicion through a video call and receiving clearance from the TNSA for their goalkeeper. “But the complainants wouldn’t budge,” he added.

Dhasa United has issued a statement expressing their gratitude to their fans and supporters while declaring that they have been unjustly accused. They also conveyed their deep sadness over how the TNSA handled the situation. The defending champions have announced their withdrawal from the tournament, citing the severe impact of the controversy on the mental and moral state of both their management team and players. “Our team includes players as young as 17, who have travelled great distances driven by their love for this game. Yesterday’s events have severely impacted the mental and moral state of both our management team and players. As a result, Dhasa UTD made the decision not to play,” the statement read.

Attempts to seek clarification from the TNSA failed as calls went unanswered, and without an official statement from the TNSA on the issue, there is no clarity over the entire development.

The GCM Gold Cup tournament is played annually in memory of the great mother of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. First held in 1981, the tournament has been organised by various bodies for over twenty years, with the Tibetan National Sports Association (TNSA) taking charge in 2003. Based on performance in the GCM tournament, the TNSA selects players for the Tibetan National Team, which occasionally competes in tournaments held in India and abroad.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *