By Emmerson Campbell
The first prize is gold.
Yesterday, organizers of the 22nd annual Kashif and Shanghai Football Tournament received a splash of platinum in the form of sponsorship to the tune of $22m.
Co-Directors Kashif Muhammad and Aubrey ‘Shanghai’ Major, yesterday received the sponsorship cheque from the Chief Executive Officer of Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T), Yog Mahadeo.
During the press briefing which was held at GT&T’s head office on Brickdam, Mahadeo emphasized that the K&S tournament was a household name in Guyana adding that his company was pleased to be the premier sponsor of the tournament.
“The Kashif and Shanghai tournament is now a household name and I’m proud to say this year we are putting in a minimum of 22 million dollars into the tournament as the premier sponsor.
“We are not going to be providing 22 million dollars alone in cash but we will be providing support services, we will be providing telecommunication services, so we are very proud to be associated with the continuous development of the tournament – it is just like us, getting better all the time,” Mahadeo declared.
The CEO pledged that his company will remain an integral part of the development of the tournament.
“We want to ensure that we remain an important
stakeholder with you (K&S Organization) and that we set the bar higher towards the development of the tournament. Once again hats off to the organizers for making the tournament what it is today, a part of the Guyanese culture and calendar.”
Speaking on behalf of the K&S Organisation, Muhammad expressed gratitude for the company’s continued support of the tournament which will run from December 10 to January 1, 2012 and expressed his happiness to be associated with the telecommunications company.
“We are once again happy to be associated with GT&T for the 15th year. They have been with our tournament for a very long time and now they have evolved to be a platinum sponsor of our tournament.
“We are extremely grateful for their contribution, it will definitely enhance our tournament, it will be better and bigger.”
Muhammad also thanked GT&T’s team for the knowledgeable ideas that they shared with the organization. He also expressed the hope that their association would continue for years to come.
The GT&T boss said that fans can look forward for many giveaways throughout the tournament and the Christmas season.
Mahadeo said that along with texting, talking and topping up, lucky tickets holders will be awarded free points towards winning a brand new home.
The first two matches of the tournament will kick off this Saturday at the Georgetown Football Club ground, Bourda. Timehri Panthers will tackle Pele, while Kuru Kururu Warriors will take on Mill Ballers from Bartica. The first match will kick off at 17:00 hrs.
The march past will take place at 20:00 hrs.
Tickets for the final will go on sale on December 10 at Ashmins Trading. Tickets will cost $2,000.
Preliminary matches are scheduled for the Georgetown Football Club (GFC), Uitvlugt, Mackenzie Sports Club (MSC), Blairmont, and Beterverwagting grounds. The semi-finals and final will take place at the National Stadium, Providence.
Meanwhile, 20 teams, including two from overseas, will vie for the top prize of one pound of gold valued at $4M, while the runner-up will receive $1,000,000. The third and fourth place finishers will carry home $500,000 and $300,000 respectively.
The Most Valuable Player will receive a motorcycle.
Teams: Caribbean United, Caledonia AIA, Pele, Western Tigers, Topp XX, Milerock, Netrockers, Amelia’s Ward United, Winners Connection, BV/Triumph, Victoria Kings, Buxton Stars, Den Amstel, Seawall United, New Amsterdam United, Rosignol United, Mill Ballers, Timehri Panthers, Kuru Kururu Warriors, and Grove Hi-Tec.