Refs are popular again

Local football referees do not often get much praise from players but, to popular acclaim, they have organized again a tournament to boost their funds.

The Cayman Islands Referees Association hosts its Six-a-Side tournament on Monday June 16 at the TE McField Annex, from 9.30 a.m.

Registration fees are $250 per team (maximum 10 players) if paid by June 11 or $300 for late registration. Cash rewards of $1,000 for the winners, $500 for second place and $200 for third, plus other prizes.

Sixteen teams took part in the inaugural tournament last year. George Town were crowned champions, defeating Young Boyz 2-1 in a penalty shoot-out following a 1-1 draw in normal time. George Town fielded a strong team that included plenty of Premier League players, including Leighton “Rumpy” Elliott, Tex Whitelocke, Kevin Moore, Garth Anderson, Miguel Pitta in goal and Miguel Simms.

The day was thoroughly enjoyed by all and several players and teams said they wanted the refs to host the event more often.

Organizer Willian Petit said, “We saw a need to fill a part of the off-season and thought there was no better way than to host a tournament as football is obviously our passion.”

He said he is hoping for at least another 16 teams this year and the maximum will be 24 teams.

Surprisingly, the officials will not have a team of their own in this one. “Some referees played in the tournament as part of different teams, but given the workload to referee the games we don’t actually put a team in the competition,” Petit said.

“We appreciate the support we’re receiving from all our sponsors, including Dart, Foster’s Food Fair, Sports Supply, Cayman Islands Brewery, CNB, Seaboard Marine and the Minister of Sports, Radio Cayman, Cayman Compass and Cayman 27 for their media coverage.”

Petit added that there will food and drinks on sale and many special prizes during the day, “so it will be a great family fun day, so all are invited to come out and enjoy.”

To register or for more information, contact Athelston Watts on 926-3136 or Derrick Williams on 926-7575 or email [email protected]

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