The youth handball premier league finals are scheduled to kick off September 27th in the city of Karbala, with eight clubs from different Iraqi provinces participating.
Falah Hamid, president of the Iraqi Central Handball Federation, said the championship would witness strong and heated competition, given that most of the participating teams would try to win the title of the current premier league.
The participating teams are Karbala, Najaf, Karkh, Shurta, Samawa, Naft al-Wasat, Tuz and Futowa.
The championship is scheduled to run for 10 days.
"The championship matches will be held per the league system of just one round," Hamid said. "The champion will be determined based on the final results, as the total number of points and number of wins will be calculated to determine the champion who will win the title."
"Developing the game and getting it to high levels needs concerted efforts," he said. "The game is facing major challenges like all other sports."
According to Hamid, the ICHF declined to take part in the Pan-Arab Games, held in Qatar at the end of the year, for technical reasons related to the poor capabilities of Iraqi players. "Therefore, our players' winning an advanced place for the time being is difficult and would need a huge effort," he said.
"We hope the youth premier league will be a stop to discover talented players," said coach Haidar Ghazi.
"We have to choose male and female players at young ages and work on developing their technical capabilities and abilities to create a new generation that can raise Iraq's name high in international arenas," he said.
Mohammed al-Araji, secretary of the ICHF, said the youth premier league championship is one of the important championships, given that the federation is dependgin on it for selecting distinguished players to represent the national team.
"Organizing local championships for age groups is important for several reasons, including the fact that the youth base needs to have championships to show their capabilities and talents, which are considered the main pillar of the game," he said.
According to al-Araji, the ICHF held training camps for the youth team in preparation for coming championships, including a training camp held in the Jordanian capital of Amman a few weeks ago that included many trial matches.
The ICHF also set October 1st as the start of the premier league, with 16 clubs participating.