Rising cases of infection with Covid-19 virus behind the move
The Oman Football Association (OFA) announced on Thursday cancellation of all the 2020-21 domestic footballing competitions. The decision was taken during the board directors meeting chaired by OFA Chairman Shaikh Salim al Wahaibi at OFA premises in Seeb Stadium. The top-flight league, Omantel League, first division league and women futsal league now remain cancelled.
The OFA board said the safety of the players and athletes who took part in the 2020-21 season was taken in mind for the decision. The OFA officials praised the collaboration from all the clubs on taking all the preventive measures to prevent spreading of Covid-19 pandemic.
The OFA chairman and board members observed that the suspension of season was in view of the recent decision of Supreme Committee to stop all official and private sports activities with effect from April 1 until further notice.
The rising cases of infection with Covid-19 virus was behind the move.
The board discussed the external assignments of the national teams in this year and the overseas participation for the local clubs. Board members studied impact of postponement of 2020-21 season with the forthcoming season along with the national teams programme and external competitions for the local clubs. To avoid clashing of dates between this season with the upcoming year plan and the financial impact on the clubs, the OFA board took the last step to cancel the domestic footballing competitions for 2020-21 season including all leagues.
Nine more rounds in the Omantel League which was scheduled to conclude before end of April. Dhofar were leading the Omantel League with 26 points after reclaiming six points which were deducted since beginning of the existing season while defending champions Seeb were positioned second with 22 points and Al Musannah were third with 20 points.
The first division league matches were scheduled to be held in Muscat during April 3 to 11. Only two rounds were played for Women’s Futsal League, which was to conclude in May.
In a similar scenario last year, the Supreme Committee tasked with tackling developments resulting from coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, had decided to suspend all the sporting activities from mid of march until further notice. The domestic footballing competitions were resumed in October 2020 and the remaining three rounds of the league were played in a month’s time.