Shillong, Jan 10: Hosts Meghalaya have been clubbed with Haryana, Odisha and the Sports Authority of India in Group C of the Junior National Football Championship (Tier 1) for the Dr BC Roy Trophy final round, which will begin on 28th January.
Meghalaya will play their first match on the opening day against Haryana, according to fixtures published on the All India Football Federation website. The fixtures, however, only go up to 31st January, though the tournament will likely end by the first half of February.
Sixteen teams have been divided into four groups, with four group matches per day. The JN Stadium and Third Ground, Polo, are likely to be the venues.
Mizoram, the defending champions, are in Group A. The only other North East team – Manipur – are in Group B.
The top team from each group will qualify for the semifinals.
The last time that Shillong hosted a national-level final round of an AIFF tournament was in 2018 when the Indian Women’s League and U-18 Youth League (now Elite League) were both held in the city.
The Junior National Football Championship follows a promotion-relegation system, with the top two sides from Tier 2 promoted to Tier 1, with the bottom two of Tier 1 dropping down into the lower tier.