Five days before the scheduled start of the 2012 ISSA/Gatorade/Digicel daCosta Cup schoolboy Football Competition the organizers have switched the venue for the opening ceremony and the first two games.
The much-anticipated opening has been moved from the Montego Bay Sports Complex in Catherine Hall, to Montego Bay’s premier football facility, Jarrett Park.
It is reported that the competition’s organizers ISSA were forced to make the move after they failed to meet the asking price for the rental of their preferred facility, the Montego Bay Sports Complex.
According to the competition’s director, George Forbes, during intense negotiations on Monday of last week, they were unable to meet the staggering asking price of 1.3 million dollars for use of the complex.
Mr. Forbes said ‘the asking price was totally out of the reach of ISSA, and those responsible for the facility were relenting in what they would require in order for the venue to be handed over, hence the switch had to be made’.
Catherine Hall, Mr. Forbes said would have been the better venue, but he also noted that Jarrett Park is just as suitable and capable, adding that last year was the first time the opening ceremony had been moved from Jarrett Park in years.
ISSA is confident those in charge at Jarrett Park will make the facility ready for the opening of the prestigious competition.
Work on the field, including watering and rolling of the playing area is expected to take place throughout the week.
The condition of the Catherine Hall Sports Complex had also been placed under the microscope following the announcement that the competition would be opened there.
The schoolboy football season is scheduled to kick off on Saturday, September 8, 2012 with a double header involving the daCosta and Manning cup champions.
Rusea’s High, among the highly fancied schools expected to again challenge for the coveted title, will open the defence of their crown against the returning former two-times winners Herbert Morrison Technical High in a ZONE ‘B’ encounter expected to attract a massive crowd..
Action kicks off at 3 p.m.
Manning Cup title holders St. Georges is down to meet Hidel in the opener set for 1 p.m.
In the meantime, Mr. Forbes says despite the setback, negotiations will continue to see if the Montego Bay Sports Complex can be acquired for the hosting of the daCosta Cup final which is penciled in for December 1.