MSSA president Fr Jude Rodrigues confirmed this following a meeting between the two sports bodies yesterday at the Deputy Director of Sports & Youth Affairs office at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus.
“For the first time, DSO and MSSA will be jointly holding tournaments across 20 sporting disciplines that include football, cricket, badminton etc. This merger will benefit thousands of children playing in the MSSA league. Earlier, kids were required to separately compete in DSO-conducted tournaments, besides the regular MSSA events, in order to be eligible to play district, state and national level tournaments. But now that will not be required as both bodies will be jointly holding the competitions, which means the children will also be awarded DSO certificates herein,” Fr Rodrigues told MiD DAY at the MSSA office in Azad Maidan yesterday.
Rodrigues further said some of MSSA’s U-16 tournaments would now be changed to U-17 events as per DSO rules.
“We have a provision under the MSSA rule book, where a change of age group is possible. Now, those Class X students, who are 16 years old and so ineligible to participate in the U-16 events, can participate as the age group will be raised by a year. But, we cannot involve junior colleges,” added Rodrigues.
Deputy Director of Sports and Youth Affairs, Mumbai division, N B Mote, said he was happy to have finally joined hands with MSSA that has been around for over a century.
“We (MSSA & DSO) decided to come together for the betterment of sport in the city. We are happy that this initiative will help more children avail government benefits like additional marks, besides certificates that will assist them in college admissions,” said Mote.