The first open monsoon football tournament in Lhuentse kicked off at Khoma Lower Secondary football ground on August 19.

The opening match was played between the dzongkhag administration and team Dudes. Dudes defeated dzongkhag team 6-1.

The Lhuentse dzongkhag sports association (DSA) organised the tournament to promote the sport and to increase interaction among the dzongkhag staff.

Thirteen teams are taking part in the tournament.

The DSA secretary, Karma, said that the civil servants, regional staff, private employees and business people in the dzongkhag do not meet often. “Such tournaments are expected to bring people together.”

A participant, Galay Jamtsho, said it is good that the DSA organised the tournament, as it is not often that such activities are held in the remote dzongkhag. “It gives an opportunity for football enthusiasts to come together.”

Many Lhuentse residents say that the DSA should organise more of such tournaments.

However, DSA secretary Karma said it is challenging because of budget constraints. The on-going tournament was also organised through support from agencies.

Karma said they would organise volleyball, basketball, and badminton tournaments. “All tournaments will be held annually.”

DSA treasurer, Tshering Wangchuk, said they collected entry fees of Nu 7,500 each from the teams. The champions of the tournament will take home the cash prize of Nu 50,000. The runners-up will be given a cash price of Nu 25,000 with trophies and certificates.

The tournament will end on September 3.

Tashi Phuntsho | Lhuentse