| ||"Afghan Cup 2012" in Washington DC|
ASA Press Release
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The Afghan Sports Federation (ASF) held its 15th annual sporting & cultural event "Afghan Cup 2012" in the Washington DC metro area from July 5th to July 8th.
The events were preceded by a formal dinner reception hosted by ASF for team representatives, event sponsors, Afghan community leaders, Afghanistan's National Olympic Committee representatives, Afghanistan's National Football (Soccer) Coach and Afghan Diplomats and athletes. This dinner reception outlined the schedule, rules and agenda for all participants in the 4 day event.
Soccer teams from all over the United States and Canada played in matches spread out over 4 days. Many Afghan players from Europe and Afghanistan participated in the event despite the grueling heat experienced in the region.
Basketball teams also participated in the tournament, which has become the premier destination for Afghan athletes across the world.
A tournament for Table Tennis was also organized this year as per the request of players with experience on the Afghanistan national team so that the top 2 players could be selected to join Afghanistan’s National Squad.
The presence of Afghanistan’s National Football (Soccer) Head Coach Mr. Yusuf Kargar encouraged the participation of Afghan athletes in an attempt to scout out new talent to add to the Afghan National Squad, as per prior agreement with ASF and Afghanistan's National Football Association.
Afghanistan's National Basketball General Secretary Mr. Ghous Nikbeen similarly participated in the event in order to add to the already successful number of US basketball players who represented Afghanistan in its first Gold Medal win in 2010 in Dhaka. The President of Afghanistan's Tennis Association Mr. Azim Niazi was also in the delegation to scout athletes from all over the US in the coming days.
Afghanistan's Red Crescent Society, one of the event sponsors, was given an opportunity to introduce themselves to the Afghan-American community through its presence in these events. Their President Mrs. Fatima Gilani's video message was broadcast to the thousands in attendance. The Bayat Foundation, which has been one of ASF sponsor for years, was represented by its Executive Director, Mrs. Fatima Bayat, who also presented trophies to the winners while emphasizing women's participation in ASF events, which continues to be a long-standing policy of the organization.
ASF also held a soccer clinic for young players and announced the creation of a new ASF Youth Soccer Academy to be run by its team of expert coaches: Jawed Sanie, Jamil Faryadi and Abdullah Monawer. This year ASF supporters worldwide benefited greatly from new innovative score reporting and immediate updating of results on the ASF website (www.afghansportsfederation.com) and the ASF Official Facebook page (www.facebook.com/afghansportsfederation), which was managed by ASF Creative Director Faiz Behgoman and Social Media Coordinator Aimal Ahmadzai.
The championship games were played on July 8th at the Discovery Center Soccerplex in Germantown, Maryland. The soccer finale was played between Afghan Premier of California & defending champion Brishna of New York. Brishna was able to win the competitive match with a score of 1-0 and were thus crowned Afghan Cup 2012's soccer champions.
The basketball championship game was played between Virginia's "The City" & New York's "Afghan 5". The City of Virginia successfully defended their title and won the championship game by a score of 43-40 in order to become Afghan Cup 2012's basketball champions.
The champion of Table Tennis was Mustafa Nawbi of Virginia who beat Basir Subati of Afghanistan.
All guests, including former US Ambassador to the United Nations, Iraq & Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, as well as this year’s featured artist Ehsan Aman joined ASF Executives, Atiq Panjshiri (Vice President), Esmael Husseini (Basketball Commissioner), Zia Panjshiri (Soccer Commissioner), Mrs. Hassina Ansary (events coordinator), Ms. Awista Zazay (women program Coordinator) and Esmat Abbasi (assistant Soccer Commissioner) on the stage to award trophies to team captains. Atiq Panjshiri in his welcoming remarks announced that ASF is in discussion with Afghanistan National Olympic Committee and National Football Federation to host similar events inside Afghanistan, an effort to revive the old tradition of hosting sporting events of the 60s and 70s in Kabul. ASF President Ajmal Ghani A. in his remarks dedicated the games to the memory of Afghanistan's former Olympic Committee President in the 70's, late Mr. Wahid Etemadi, who had passed away a few weeks ago in Kabul. He also noted that the Afghan Sports Federation (ASF) has successfully held these annual sporting & cultural events since 1998 with its team of volunteers, administrators and officials who dedicate much time and efforts to ensure the Afghan community in the US is connected to Afghans all over the world, specifically those inside Afghanistan.
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