KARACHI: A launching ceremony of the 1st K-Electric Girls’ Football League was held at the KPT Sports Complex in Karachi. The initiative makes K-Electric the first corporate entity in the country to organize an exclusive female football tournament.

Col (Retd) Younas Changaizi, International footballer and Ex-Minister Sports Baluchistan graced the ceremony as the Chief Guest, along with senior officials of KE, sports stars and media persons. The Chief Guest appreciated KE’s role in encouraging women’s participation in football, boxing and other popular sports at the grassroots level and said, “These girls have developed good techniques and all they need now is support and guidance to excel on an international level. I would urge other organizations to come forward and nurture the talents of these promising players.”

The tournament is being organized by KE in collaboration with Naseem Hameed Football Academy. Naseem Hameed is a Pakistani track & field athlete, who got the title of “The Fastest Woman in South Asia”, when she won a gold medal in the 100 meters race at the South-Asian Games -2010, held in Dhaka. Naseem Hameed commented; “It is heartening to see that a leading corporate organization realizes the great potential of female football enthusiasts in Pakistan, and it has launched such a resourceful initiative to prepare young girls for international competitiveness.”

The tournament kicked off with an exhibition match dedicated to (Late) Shahlyla Baloch – the young Pakistani forward who passed away in an unfortunate car accident. There are eight teams participating in the contest, from different areas of Karachi. These include; Naseem Hameed Football Academy, Aga Khan Gymkhana, Young Muslim Women Football Club, Marta Women Football Club, Karachi Kickers Football Academy, Mohsin Gilani Football Academy, Elite Sports Academy and the Social Bond. The event will conclude on the 26th of March, 2018, with a final match and a closing ceremony.

Head of sports & Sustainability Zehra Mehdi appreciated the enthusiasm of the contestants and said; “KE has a strong affiliation with sports and has always been at the forefront to nurture the talents of our youth – providing them with the resources, guidance and inspiration to gain sports-stardom. By organizing the country’s first corporate backed football tournament for women, we are creating a strong platform to harness the potential of these young female footballers.”

In 2016, KE also organized the first ever ‘Girls Boxing Championship’. Creating various powerful platforms to engage different segments of the population, KE is empowering the youth and giving back to the society. Over the last five years, the continued success of the annual ‘KE Lyari Football League’ has channeled the energies of thousands of football-enthusiasts and produced dozens of national and international players from this under-privileged community.