Tibetan National Sports Association

About TNSA


Members of the ‘Lhasa United’ football team. Spencer Chapman describes a match against ‘Lhasa United’ in October 1936: ‘Together with a crowd of supporters, our opponents were already there, turned out in garish harlequin-coloured silk shirts with L.U. sewn on to the pockets. There were a remarkable looking team, and certainly needed to be “United”! There was a tough looking Nepali soldier, a Chinese tailor, three bearded Ladakhis wearing red fezes – the most hirsute being the goalkeeper, a Sikkimese clerk of Pangda-Tsang’s, and five Tibetan officials, including our friends Yuto, Surkhang-Se, and Taring Dzongpon. The latter still had their charm-boxes on top of their heads, so were precluded from heading the ball.’


Photograph : Federick Spencer Chapman (1936 – 1937)


October 1998, Kasur Jetsun Pema the then President of TCV (Tibetan Children’s village), received an invitation from Italian Rock Music Group named Dinamorock for an exhibition football match in Italy . The TCV had taken all the initiatives of selecting and training of the two teams of under-13 and the senior team. Thus the first-ever Tibetan Football Team was formed and played in Bologna , Italy , in 1999. This was the turning point for Tibetan football for it opened doors for talented players who could realize their dream of playing for their country.

In 2001, the Danish Tibetan Cultural Society invited the Tibetan Football Team to play against the Greenland national team. This visit by our Tibetan Football Team left no doubt that given proper training and support, our players could successfully compete at international levels.

The TNSA (Tibetan National Sports Association) is the brainchild of Kasur Jetsun Pema. She initiated the move to start the association realizing its potential to energize the youth of Tibet through a natural vehicle to make a difference in our just struggle for our identity and culture. Accordingly, the association was formally formed in May 2002 by pooling in human and financial resources of TCV. The organization’s intimate tie-up with TCV organization continues today. But, now the time has come for the association to find ways and means to stand on its own. And, this effort goes on today.

TNSA is registered under the Indian Societies Act XXI, 1860. The Kashag (Cabinet) Office of the Tibetan Government in-Exile has approved its mission and functions, The association has a Governing Body and an Executive Board to manage its affairs

Aims & Objectives

1.To create a sustainable Tibetan National Sports Association and Tibetan Football Team.
2.To develop, organize and promote the game of football within the Tibetan Community.
3.To promote Tibetan Football at the International Level
4.To promote professionalism and career for Tibetan footballers
5.To promote awareness of Tibetan cause and issues.
6.To promote Football in particular and in general other games and sports opportunities for Tibetan children and youth at all levels within the exile Tibetan community, India and abroad:
7.To organize, promote and encourage football and other sporting activities in the Tibetan community
8.To start, build, construct, manage, and organize sporting facilities at all levels with particular reference to football, and furnish them with necessary furniture and equipment.

 Future Initiative

The association plans to further develop sports in the Tibetan community. Some of the measures on the anvil are:

1.Establish a coaching centre with sports facilities for the Tibetan community
2.Strengthen the base and quality of football clubs in the community.
3.Encourage school-level football clubs through incentive schemes
4.Organize football tournaments for both school and club levels.
5.Participate in football tournaments in India .
6.Arrange international tours for senior and junior Tibetan Football Teams
7.Organize workshops to promote sports in the community
8.Conduct training programs for officials and coaches.