Fiji FA issues stern warning

Football players who plan to feature in tournaments other than ones involving their district could face suspension if they do not obtain clearance first. Picture: FILE

Football players who plan to feature in tournaments other than ones involving their district could face suspension if they do not obtain clearance first, warns Fiji Football Association CEO Mohammed Yusuf.

He issued a stern warning to players who were thinking of doing so in the upcoming Courts Inter District Championship.

Yusuf’s warning came in the wake of rumours that some district reps were travelling to Australia next week to participate in the Sanatan World Cup which coincides with the IDC.

“We do not have issues with players who want to go. However, they need to get proper clearance from the districts they play for,” he said.

“Districts rely on these players, as they have throughout the season, and it is just unfortunate that the Sanatan World Cup collides with the dates of the IDC.”

Yusuf added that any player who failed to comply with district requirements would be dealt with severely.

“We will suspend the player if they do not get proper release from their district. Not only that, we have been in contact with the organisers of the Sanatan World Cup.

“Once we have suspended any player, we will advise the organisers and they will make sure the player is not able to feature in that tournament as well.”

Yusuf added Fiji FA had to step in as districts had complained to them that players who have been playing for them throughout this season and have been registered for the upcoming IDC, were wanting to travel for the tournament in Australia.

The 9th Sanatan World Cup is scheduled to be held in Queensland, Australia, from October 6-9. Fiji, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and USA will be taking part at the tournament.

Meanwhile, the Courts IDC kicks off next Wednesday at Suva’s HFC Bank Stadium. In matches on Wednesday, Tailevu Naitasiri plays Tavua at 11am in the Premier division.

Super Premier Division matches kick off at 1pm with Nadroga battling Nadi. Suva takes on Navua at 3pm, Lautoka battles Ba at 5pm.

The official opening takes place at 7pm after which the in the feature match of day one, defending champions Labasa plays Rewa at 7.30pm.

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