Western Football Association (WFA) is set to kick off their highest football Championship “The Western Cup” at the Western Provincial capital town-Gizo, JFK Soccer Stadium from the 06th May to 19th May 2016.
WFA President Robert Riqeo confirmed this to Star Sports in a statement yesterday.
“Gizo Town will be rocked when the long awaited Western Provincial battle of the giant Soccer Championship “THE WESTERN CUP” will be staged at the JFK Soccer Stadium from the 06th May to 19th May 2016,’’ Riqeo said.
He said, the last Western Cup was staged in the old JFK Soccer Stadium in 2009; however, this time round it will be played on the refurbished stadium with imported grass-turf and improved facilities thanks to the FIFA-Goal-project and Solomon Islands Football Federation [SIFF] and Western Provincial Government.
“Our local soccer players will feel for the first time playing at the surface that is of a international-standard,’’ he said.
Central West Ranogga Zone Football Association was the Western Cup “Trophy” holder when it came out the winner of the 2009 championship in Gizo.
Western Football Association has 20 twenty affiliated zone association members stretching from Gatokae in the east to the Shortlands deep west.
Riqeo said, at its meeting in Gizo on the 05th March 2016 the WFA Executive Committee agreed to make open invitation for all 20 ZFAs, it means only zone associations that meet criteria set by the Western Cup tournament organizing committee will be eligible to participate in the 2016-Western Cup Championship in May.
Notable Criterion and Responsibilities of the participating Zone FA Soccer Teams should be as follows;
•In principle, only a representative soccer-team from a Zone Association Member, comprising of selected cream-players from its villages or FCs and who has registered with the 2016-Western Cup Organizing Committee is eligible to participate in the Competition.
•A registration fee of $500-00 (five hundred dollars) as approved by the WFA Executive Committee must accompany all entries.
•Each participating team shall be responsible for health, medical covers for its players and officials.
•Each participating team shall be responsible for its meals [food/rations], accommodation in Gizo and transport for its players and officials to Gizo and return to their villages.
•Each team is eligible to register up to twenty five (25) players.
•A player qualifies to participate in the tournament if he is currently registered for the Zone
Riqeo said, Zone Association Members are given until 4.00pm on the 21st April 2016 to confirm with the Western Football Association Executive Committee their participation.
“The tournament fixtures will be drawn when final participating teams are received on the 21st April 2016.
The Western Provincial Soccer squad or traditionally known as the “Western Turtle S quad” will be selected during the Western Cup in May. The squad will represent the province in the upcoming “Solomon Games-2016” and also for the “Solomon Cup-2016”.
In the other development, Western Football Association is yet to confirm its participation in the 2016- Solomon Games in the following football-codes, “ Futsal Men – open catergory” , Women’s – Open Category” and “ Beach S occer – Open Catergory” .
Confirmation will be communicated to SIFF and the Solomon Games Committee after a consultative meeting with the Western Provincial Government on Thursday 07th April 2016 in Gizo provincial headquarters.
FA in its current league.
Members [20xZFAs]: East Marovo ZFA, Central Marovo ZFA, West Marovo ZFA, North Rendova ZFA, South Rendova ZFA, South New Georgia ZFA, Central Roviana ZFA, Noro Town ZFA, North New Georgia ZFA, Kohigo/Parara ZFA, Kolombangara ZFA, Gizo Town ZFA, West Gizo ZFA, Madegugusu ZFA, Southest Ranogga ZFA, Centralwest Ranogga ZFA, Southeast Vella ZFA, Northwest Vella ZFA, East Famoa ZFA, West Famoa ZFA.
By CROFTON UTUKANA