Indian Football
AIFF Medical Committee makes recommendations to improve age verification in football
06 Oct 2023

AIFF Media Team

NEW DELHI: The All India Football Federation’s Medical Committee met on Friday, October 6, 2023, via video conferencing.

The meeting was chaired by Dr Kiran Kumar Kulkarni, and was attended by AIFF Secretary General Dr Shaji Prabhakaran, Deputy Secretary General Mr Satyanarayan M, and committee members Col Sandipan Das Sarma, Dr Anirban Malik, Dr Shikha Dhaundiyal, and Dr Srinath J Unnithan.

The Secretary General said, “We are grateful to all the members for taking time out of their practices to deliberate on some important medical issues of the day. We appreciate the dedication and hard work of all the members to see that football grows in a fair manner.

“I am glad that we are able to discuss age verification on this platform, as we need to eliminate this cancer from football. It is the need of the hour to come up with a set of regulations and to be very strict in order to prevent it. The Medical Committee will play an important role in this regard, and clean the image of football in India.”

The Committee deliberated for a long about the issue of age verification and came to the conclusion that the Tanner-Whitehouse3 (TW3) method of testing bone density is the most accurate way for verifying age for the lower age groups.

To that extent, the Committee also recommended that a radiologist be appointed to lead the way. The Committee also suggested that Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) could be used for U-16 and higher age categories, while TW3 be used for those below. The Committee also discussed the importance of knowledge sharing within the sports medicine community and recommended that the federation host a Medical Conference in 2024. The Secretary General suggested that a sub-committee be formed for the same to look into the nitty gritty of holding a conference of such magnitude. He said that the Medical Conference should be a broad-based one so that experts in this field should attend the conference not only from India but from other countries as well.   

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