The 5th edition of the Mokokchung Inter-Ward Football Tournament organized by Marepkong Youth Association under the theme “Rise as One” kicked off on 12 March at Imkongmeren Sports Complex, Mokokchung.
The inaugural program was graced by Mayangnungba, President NDPP Mokokchung Region.

The inaugural speaker lauded the Marepkong Youth Association for organizing the tournament and encouraged all the players of the 13 participating teams to exhibit good sportsmanship throughout the tournament.

mokokchung inter ward football
Players of Artang Ward and Marepkong Ward, in pink jersey, with Mayangnungba, President NDPP, Mokokchung Region and the organizers before the inaugural match of the fifth Mokokchung Inter-ward Football Tournament at Imkongmeren Sports Complex, Mokokchung, 12 March. (MTNews Photo)

Highlighting the opportunities available to youth, the guest of honor emphasized the importance of taking one’s passions seriously. He encouraged players to not only play for the love of the game but also to consider utilizing their talents as a means of livelihood.

He also shared insights into the promising prospects for football players, citing the recent Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the government and Bhaichung Bhutia’s Football Academy. This collaboration opens avenues for players to excel at national and international levels, he said.

He stated that the AstroTurf stadium in Mokokchung is set to open soon, and similarly, there are numerous excellent playing grounds scattered across Nagaland. He added that these developments aim to enhance opportunities for youth and contribute to their overall welfare.

The inaugural program also featured a welcome address by Bendangsunep, a special performance of the song “Tephong Ka,” an exhortation by Marnungsang Ao, Chairman of Mongsenbai Ward, and the ceremonial oath administered by Takalong Pongen, President of the Marepkong Youth Association.

The tournament will offer a cash prize of Rs 50,000, along with certificates for the champions, and Rs 30,000 with certificates for the runners-up. Additionally, individual prizes will be awarded for the Highest Goal Scorer, Best Goalkeeper, Best Defender, and Player of the Tournament.

Entry tickets for the tournament are priced at Rs 30 each and the proceeds would be shared on a 50/50 basis with the participating teams. Sangtemla Ward are the defending champions of the tournament.

Former champs Artang trounce Marepkong 7-0 in tournament opener

The tournament kicked off with a rather one-sided match played between Artang ward and Marepkong ward where Artang humbled Marepkong with a resounding 7-0 win. The next two of the three matches played today ended in draws.

mokokchung football
The inaugural match between Artanf and Marepkong 

In the second match, Yimyu Ward and Alempang Ward battled it out to a 1-1 draw, while the third match of the day played between Penli ward and Majakong ward ended in a 2-2 stalemate.

Alemjungba of Artang Ward made a memorable outing by securing the first hat-trick of the tournament during the inaugural match. His goals came in the 8th, 20th, and 59th minutes of the match. Tongpangkokdang, Temshi Imchen, Namang, and Limatongzuk were the other players who scored for Artang ward.

In the second match, Nungsangkaba scored for Yimyu in the 9th minute but Chubatemsu scored the equalizer in the 26th minute. The two teams settled for a draw with both teams earning a point in Pool A.

The Pool B encounter between Penli and Majakong, the third match of the day, ended in a 2-2 draw. S Lempa scored both goals for Penli while Opangsunep netted the b race for Majakong. Majakong took an early lead in the 4th minute but it was cancelled by Penli in the 17th minute. Penli then took the lead just two minutes later but Majakong equalized in the second half.

Mokokchung Times

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