News and Views on Tibet

29th GCM football tournament to be held in Hunsur Tibetan settlement

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The coveted GCM gold cup (Photo/GCM official facebook)

By Tsering Dhundup

DHARAMSHALA, Dec 8: The next edition of theGyalyum Chemo Memorial Gold Cup (GCMGC ) football tournament is slated to take place at the Hunsur Rabgayling Tibetan Settlement in south India,the apexTibetansports body, Tibetan National Sports Association (TNSA) announced Thursday. The anticipated kick-off date for the tournament is tentatively set for May 15, 2024. Clubs aspiring to participate in this event are urged to carefully review the terms and conditions stipulated by TNSA before initiating the registration process.

The tournament however, will be held with new guidelines as far as participating teams are concerned. The  statement announced that when the tournament is hosted at South Tibetan Settlements, there will be no constraints on the number of teams participating from North, Central, and Northeast India. Meanwhile, the teams representing the South will be composed of teams from the five major settlements which include Dekyi Larso, Lugsum Samdupling, Mundgod, Hunsur, and Kollegal. Additionally, one team each from Tamil Nadu/Andhra Pradesh/Pondicherry, Mysore & Bangalore, and Mangalore/Goa/Darwar. International teams are also invited, with one team each from North America, Europe, Australia, Pokhara, and Kathmandu.

Conversely, when the North Tibetan Settlements play host to the GCMGC in the subsequent year, there will be no limit on the number of teams from South, Central, and Northeast India. The North teams will comprise entities from the host region, alongside two teams from Uttarakhand and one team each from various regions including Dharamshala, Chauntra/Bir/Tashijong, Sirmour District, Delhi, Punjab & Union territory of Chandigarh, Ladakh, Orissa/Bandra/Mainpatt, and Northeast. Similar to the South Tibetan Settlements’ arrangement, international teams will have one team each from North America, Europe, Australia, Pokhara, and Kathmandu. 

The recent alterations in guidelines regarding hosting the GCM and team participation were formulated after a meeting with the representatives of the Southern Tibetan Sports Association on June 18. The absence of South teams in the past three GCMGC tournaments was attributed to TNSA’s previous decision to limit participation from Tibetan settlements in South India to three teams, down from five.

Additionally, the choice of North Indian locations as host of the GCMGC tournament for the last four tournaments sparked controversy and criticism for its perceived unfairness toward nearly half of the Tibetan exile population residing in South Indian settlements. Subsequent discussions and a meeting with representatives from South settlements have led to the allocation of hosting rights to a South settlement for the upcoming tournament, enabling the participation of South teams.

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