New Delhi: Problems have arised in the SAFF Cup even before a ball has been kicked regarding usage of Greenfield stadium in Thiruvananthapuram with foreign teams being denied access to use the main venue.
According to a report in the Hindustan Times, barring India, all other teams were denied access to use the main venue for practice sessions ahead of the SAFF Cup. It was cited that the playing surface could have been damaged as organizers instead allowed the host nation.
India had access to the stadium and even played a squad match on Tuesday. Meanwhile during a press conference, India coach Stephen Constantine denied using the main stadium.
Reports claim that Indian squad went through an extensive session for close to two hours at the venue.
Constantine, who dodged a question regarding this matter, slammed the lack of training facility at the venue. He stated that it is bad that a nation calls players from different countries and there is no training pitch.
Other participants in the SAFF Cup such as Sri Lanka, who have been camping here for the past two weeks, haven’t yet seen the stadium. Even other nations such as Afghanistan, Bhutan, Nepal and Bangladesh too have faced similar problems.
Further reports claim that an official from the organising committee stated that such issues exist in all competitions and other nations too do the same.
The training pitch turf at the Lakshmibai National College of Physical Education, has been criticised by Afghanistan coach who feared his players may get injured.