After a two year hiatus influenced by the turmoil that engulfed the sport, the Kashif and Shanghai (K&S) Organization officially launched the 25th edition of their knockout tourney yesterday at the 704 Sports Club on Albert and Lamaha Streets.
The event which is scheduled to commence on March 20th and conclude on April 5th, will feature 16 clubs from various associations competing in a traditional knockout format.
The competing teams are Alpha United, Pele FC, Western Tigers, Riddim Squad, the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), Georgetown Football Club (GFC), Victoria Kings, Mahaica Determinators, New Amsterdam United, Slingerz FC, Den Amstel FC, Grove Hi-Tech, Agricola Red Triangle, Winners Connections, High Stars FC and Bartica Beacons. Notable absentees from the event include current holders Buxton United, two time winners Fruta Conquerors and Sunburst Camptown as well as Santos FC. Winner of the event will receive the championship trophy and $2,000,000 while the runners-up will collect $1,000,000 and the respective title.
The third and fourth placed teams will receive $500,000 and $250,000 respectively with the corresponding accolade.
Co-Director Kashif Mohammed during the feature address said the organization is delighted to successfully collaborate with the Normalization Committee in what is a collective effort to ensure a place is found for the continued staging of what is undeniably an historic tourney locally. According to Mohammed:“Further we wish to take this opportunity to express our broader support for the Normalization Committee in its quest to realize the regularization of football administration in Guyana through the GFF and the resumption of an organized and fulsome calendar of football events across Guyana.”
He added the 25th edition of the event marks the first occasion which the longest running football tourney is being held outside its customary time frame.
Asked if the event will generate the similar interest from public despite the change in time period, Mohammed said work will have to be done to help to promote and generate the required attention in the tourney.
He noted while attendance at football games generally is not what it used to be, the organization will do its part to resuscitate the interest.
Guyana Football Federation (GFF) Normalization Committee Chairman Clinton Urling said he is always overjoyed to be a part of tournament presentations as it clearly aligns with the mantra of the committee which is to see organized football being played.
Urling further congratulated the organization for a fantastic tourney, noting the organization is a pioneer within sport for their hosting in his view an unrivalled football event in the country.
According to the GFF boss, the K&S Organization has transformed the sport locally while declaring he knows with championship will be of high quality and very competitive. He further thanked the organizers for the hosting of their 25th edition and wished them all the best for the entirety of the event.
Ansa McAl Public Relations Officer (PRO) Darshanie Yussuf said the company was pleased to be associated once more with the longstanding event as the veteran organization has contributed 25 years of amazing football.
She noted while her company was part of the successful youth version of the tourney, the organization is back to what it is known best for.
According to Yussuf the tourney is truly a national event, hinting it was an opportunity the company simply could not pass on. Yussuf further said she is looking forward to an amazing start to the event while thanking the K&S organization for partnering with Ansa McAl.
Sponsors of the event include Ansa McAl under is Stag Beer Brand, Mohamed’s Enterprise, Demerara Distillers Limited under its Pepsi Brand, Church’s Chicken, Cell Phone Shack under its Plum Brand, Hits and Jams Television, Sonic Business Services, Club 704 and JGS Telecommunications.