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Maharashtra Giants win both divisions at South-West Zonal Championship 2023

Posted on Monday, February 20, 2023 by ARFAI,

The victorious Maharashtra Giants (Sr) team with former India captain Sudip Chakraborty and current India captain Mahesh Tirkey
Maharashtra Giants (Sr) champions with Indian Captain Mahesh Tirkey and former Indian Captain Sudip Chakraborty

The Maharashtra Giants emerged victorious in both the senior and junior divisions at the joint South-West Zonal Championship 2023 organised by ARFAI is association with Telangana Footy Association (TFA) on 26th February 2023 at the Gymkhana Maidan, Secunderabad, Telangana.

The tournament saw 150 players and officials from across the south and western region state teams including senior and junior divisions, return to playing Australian Rules Football after a long gap due to Covid. States that participated were Maharashtra Giants (Sr & Jr), Andhra Pradesh Magpies (Sr & Jr), Tamil Nadu Kangaroos (Sr & Jr), Telangana Saints (Sr & Jr) and Kerela Bombers (Sr).

The tournament was won by the experienced Maharashtra Giants teams in both senior and junior division. While the senior division Grand Final saw a very tough competition put in by the debutant Kangaroos senior team, the Giants defeated the Saints quite convincingly in the junior division.

The Fair play award was won by the Maharashtra Giants team, who displayed great sporting spirit on and off field. One of the major highlights of the tournament was the ‘Best Player – Junior Division’ award won by Maksood from the Giants, representing his state and participating at any inter-state level competition for the very first time.

Maharashtra Giants senior division captain and former Team India player Zuber Baig said, “The tournament was great and a special thanks to all the teams who have participated post Covid and played really well. Hope to see everyone grow each year with more energy and talent to showcase. A huge thank you to ARFAI and the Telangana state organising committee for the warm welcome and hosting a great tournament for us all”.

The zonal has now brought back the players together from different states after a long gap. This will motivate them to now start with regular practice and also grow in numbers in new districts in their own states. All players and leaders across the country would now be awaiting eagerly for the return of the biggest Footy tournament in the country, the ARFAI National Championship.

The tournament very importantly also marks the launch of a yearlong program to restart Footy activities in south-western states of India and bring back participants to the sport post pandemic, supported by the AFL and AFL Asia. ARFAI is grateful to all its supporters who contributed to the success of the tournament including AFL Asia and the Australian Consulate, Chennai.