The Sonali Othith 40+ plus veterans tournament 2016 for players aged 40 and over has served a timely reminder of just how popular football is in the community. The summer league had six teams participating and the enthusiasm all round has been a joy to behold.
Poplar were worthy winners of the 2016 40+ showcase with Masud Miah of Poplar a worthy recipient of man of the tournament. Dawatul Islam were the surprise package and raised many eyebrows to finish second. Shagor showed great character to finish in third place on the last day, and there are special mentions for Shadwell, CAG and Ocean.
Every player was a credit unto themselves and each team served to remind us of how important it is to remain active at an age where many lapse into a retirement mindset. In fact this should be the opposite and Sonali Othith for years has been at the forefront of promoting sports amongst the older generations.
Sonali Othith remain active in the field and recently also held the Community Friendship Cup, comprised of senior members of various UK welfare organisations, and which was won by the greater Lamakazi Welfare Association.
In fact such has been the demand that we are now in the process of setting up a similar league for the winter. Then there is also the 8 a side Mini World Cup, The Masters Cup and the Greater Sylhet Upazila tournament in August to round off a summer of fabulous fottball.
This is testament to not only the hard work of Sonali Othith but also the positive mindset of a community that looks to increasingly keep active as the years roll on.
In fact Sonali Othith may go further and even arrange an Upozila Cup format for 45 year olds and above.
Sonali Othith means golden past but that doesn’t mean that this is a place where golden oldies reminisce the good old days. It is a platform from which we look at the past to ignite our future.
Football is a great medium to bring people together and promote an active and healthy life. Sonali Othith will continue to engage with hard to reach individuals using the beautiful game to reach out and make contact. Sports for all, sports for life.