Football for all in the Tamil Community

On Saturday 8th July, the WNST Chief Executive, Stewart Goshawk, was one of the principal guests at a day-long football tournament hosted by the Tamil Association of Brent (TAB), held at the Middlesex FA facility at Rectory Park in Ealing.

TAB has received financial support from WNST over a number of years and their most recent grant was used in part to purchase new kit for the teams to wear at the tournament – and how splendid they looked.  It is interesting to note that their sports offer covers a range of activities, including football, netball and athletics, seeking to ensure that there is something for everyone.

This event is one of a number that take place each year across London, organised by the several Tamil community associations around the capital.  These are occasions to celebrate their unique culture and to come together as one community under the banner of football. The event was supported by a large number of volunteers from the local community, which is to be applauded.  London FA also assisted with the provision of officials – without whom there is no game !

The TAB event was a significant occasion, with more than 40 teams participating, in different age groups, ranging from U11s to adults.  It is interesting that whilst historically, India and Sri Lanka, the Tamil homelands, have a much greater tradition in cricket, this tournament showed the universal popularity of football.  It was also great to see some of the younger age group teams comprising both boys and girls, playing alongside each other.

We spoke to one of the charity’s organisers, Siva Sivapalan about the tournament and TAB’s work.

Many thanks to TAB for their hospitality and their hosting of an excellent event.