Afghanistan's Athletes Participate in ASF's 12th "Afghan Cup 2009" in Washington DC
WASHINGTON, July 22 - Thousands of Afghans from all over the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, and Afghanistan gathered at Howison Park in Prince William County, Virginia, and the Maryland Soccerplex Stadium of Washington DC Metropolitan area to celebrate the Afghan Sports Federation's 12th annual "Afghan Cup" sporting and cultural event. The three days event, which began on July 10th, came to conclusion on Sunday July 12th 2009. The Championship games, cultural events and the Afghan picnic were held at the internationally renowned "Germantown Soccerplex Stadium" in Maryland.
After the conclusion of the Championship games, which included table tennis (Ping Pong), women's volleyball, men's volleyball, women's basketball, men's basketball, youth soccer, and women and men's soccer (football), trophies and awards were presented to the champions, followed by a live concert by famous Afghan artist Mr. Ehsan Aman until midnight on Sunday. This year's cultural/sporting events were the biggest ever hosted by the Afghan Sports Federation, with thousands of spectators from all over the United States, Canada and Europe including International sponsors and local food vendors. Hundreds of athletes both males & females with thousands of their fans and supporters came to watch the games, and enjoyed the festivities.
The final day program started with Soccer Semi final games at 10am, followed by volleyball championship games for both men & women, table tennis championships, followed by a spectacular basketball championship game in the afternoon inside the indoor gymnasium packed with leagues of spectators cheering for their favorite teams. The Soccer Championship game between Pamir Football Club of New Jersey and Afghan Premier Club of California ended in a 0-0 tie after the regulation and extra time; finally Afghan Premier Club of California prevailed over Pamir FC, NJ in penalty Kicks (3-2).
This year's ASF special guests and trophy presenters were Afghanistan Ambassador to the United States Ambassador Sayed Tayeb Jawad, former US Ambassador to United Nations Dr. Zalmay Khalilzad and industrialist Mr. Ehsan Bayat. ASF officials including, Executive Director Mr. Atiq Panjshiri, VP Mr. Sulaiman Lutfi, Board Secretary Mr. Zia Panjshiri, Mr. Esmael Husseini, Mr. Assad Amin, Ms. Tabasum Lutfi, Ms. Awista Zazay, Mr. Kamran Lutfi, Mr. Abdullah Monawar, and Afghan Sports Federation President Mr. Ajmal Ghani A. presented medals and trophies as well to the Champions. The tournament's soccer MVP was Mr. Aimal Jamal of Afghan Premier of California and the basketball MVP was Mr. Mahzullah Zurmaty from Virginia.
The men's basketball champion was team Afghan Ballers of Virginia, the women's basketball champion was team Khorasan of Virginia. The men's volleyball champion was team Khorosan of Virginia; the women's volleyball champion was team Azadi of Virginia. Women's soccer champion was team Noor of Virginia. "By far this was the largest gathering of Afghans outside of Afghanistan; the Afghan Sports Federation's staff, volunteers, officials, and management performed professionally. The Afghan media including televisions and radio stations covered the events extensively. Everything went according to plan and we have received rave reviews from fans; we hope to duplicate these programs in Afghanistan," said Mr. Ajmal Ghani A. President of the Afghan Sports federation. Mr. Ghani dedicated the events to the memories of ASF members Ms Homaira Rahman, Farid Abbassi, and Afghan film star Hashmat Khan who was a trophy presenter the previous year.