By Soumo Ghosh,
AIFF Media Team
Kolkata, October 18, 2020: A day prior to the conclusion of the Hero I-League Qualifiers 2020 and with just one round of matches to go, the final round of tests for Covid-19 have already been completed by the All India Football Federation.
League CEO Mr. Sunando Dhar applauded the medical staff who have “helped in the smooth conduct of the tournament.”
“Our top priority was always the safety of the players and officials who are involved in the tournament. The fact that we have had over 1,200 tests in a month to ensure that the bubble was maintained in a proper manner,” stated Mr. Dhar.
“I also need to applaud all the frontline medical safety workers who helped up run this tournament so smoothly. This would not have been possible without them.”
“Having ensured and executed a safe bubble environment for all the players and officials involved in the tournament, we are assured that sporting events can be held in our country if the proper procedures and guidelines are followed,” he added.
“Even if we have a pandemic at hand, we are ready to put the safety procedures in place and ensure those involved in the tournament are not at risk.”
The tournament has been the first-ever action across all sports in India since the Covid-19 lockdown.
A number of strict protocols and health regulations were put in place in the Standard Operating Protocols (SOPs) for the tournament.
As per the SOPs, every individual had to spend four days in quarantine once they entered the bio-secure bubble that was created for all the teams and officials, with a test being done on the third day of quarantine. After that, these individuals would be tested every 5-6 days.
Starting from September 16, more than 1,200 tests have been conducted on everyone in and around the tournament. A number of extra precautions were also taken during the course of the tournament. The vitals of every team member were taken on a regular basis.
All the vehicles, training grounds and surrounding facilities were sanitised before being used. On match-days, the players and officials could not move outside designated areas inside the stadium, which were sanitised and sealed well before their arrival.