New Delhi: Since the inception of the NFL in 1996, the Santosh Trophy had suffered tremendously. A host of India's top players chose to represent the state where they were playing their trade rather than the one where they were born in. And three years ago to save the very existence of the trophy from becoming a two horse race between Bengal and Goa, the AIFF changed the domicile rule. Under the new rule, players could only represent the state they originated from and not the one where they played professionally. Motivational factor And the effects of that legislation are being felt today at the 2004 Santosh Trophy. The change of rules has gone down extremely well with a lot of the players too, who feel that not only will it give the tournament a new lease of life. But it also becomes a motivational factor for youngsters as they would get a chance to play with seasoned professionals Having become a secondary tournament since the inception of the NFL, the Santosh Trophy for once will finally see the creme-de-la-Creme of India Football. So much so that even someone like a Baichung Butia, who for years had represented Bengal, could finally be representing his home sate of Sikkim.
Topics : Football