The Sikkimese capital of Gangtok played host to a spectacular extravaganza today, when a Superstar XI faced United Sikkim FC in the „Super Football“ football match at the Paljor Stadium. The USFC XI defeated the visitors 7-4.
The match organised by JPR Events was originally scheduled to take place in Kolkata on January 23, but had to be postponed indefinitely. But the organisers arranged an alternative venue for the match in collaboration with the Sikkim Sports & Youth Affairs Department.
The „Super Football“ match played in the home state of Indian football legend Baichung Bhutia witnessed some heroes of the past taking on the pitch of the Paljor Stadium. The Superstar XI coached by former Dutch star Ruud Gullit fielded the likes of Christian Karembeu (France), Carlos Valderrama (Colombia), Regi Blinker (Netherlands) and Ali Daei (Iran), while Baichung Bhutia’s United Sikkim FC XI had some former India stars like Shyam Thapa, I.M. Vijayan, Jo Paul Ancheri and Alvito D’Cunha in their ranks.
„It is a great opportunity for me and football fans in Sikkim to play against legendary footballers and we hope this inspires upcoming soccer talents of Sikkim, North Bengal and the entire Northeast region“ Baichung Bhutia told before the match.
The match was played in the presence of celebrities like Bollywood stars Rahul Bose and Neha Dhupia, Rudolf Schenker from the famous German rock group Scorpions, 2010 World Cross-Country Rally Champion Tim Trenker and many more. „I’m realy excited to be part of Baichung Bhutia’s fund raiser football match and to see all the stars like Ruud Gullit, Carlos Valderrama and more,“ Neha Dhupia told.
„It is an attempt on our part to showcase Sikkim’s resilience in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake and to maintain its tourism prospects. So, we are bringing footballers practically from all parts of the world to play in Sikkim to send across a message that the state is safe,“ Sikkim’s State Sports & Youths Affairs Minister N.K. Pradhan stated.
Some percentage of the proceeds will be donated to the victims of the September 18 earthquakes in Sikkim according to JPR Events.
Superstar XI 4-7 United Sikkim FC XI
at the Paljor Stadium, Gangtok
0-1 Ayeni Bidemi Daniel (7′), 0-2 Khangembam Thoi Singh (12′), 0-3 Ayeni Bidemi Daniel (19′), 1-3 Marcel Oerlemans (30′), 2-3 Sushil Kumar Singh (32′), 2-4 Biko (35′), 2-5 Thampden (42′), 2-6 Nim Tshering Lepcha (57′), 3-6 Marcel Oerlemans (64′), 4-6 Marcel Oerlemans (68′), 4-7 Bhupendra Khewa (70′)