ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The Leeward Islands Football Tournament, originally slated for August 9-17, has been postponed to a tentative date later this year.
A well-placed source has confirmed that a decision was taken to postpone the planned competition after intended group hosts indicted their inability to facilitate teams.
Montserrat was identified as Group A hosts which included Antigua & Barbuda, French St. Martin and US Virgin Islands while Dutch St. Maarten was slated to host Group B. The other teams slated to contest Group B are St. Kitts, Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands (BVI).
Dutch St. Maarten, reports indicate, is having issues with the lighting installed at their newly renovated stadium while Montserrat’s reasons for pulling out of hosting are still unknown.
Round Robin group stage matches were to be played during the first four days of the competition with the top two advancing to the finals for a knockout style competition to determine the winner. The finals were to be held in Montserrat.
Plans were also initiated for the winner of the Leeward Islands Tournament to meet the winners of the recently concluded Windward’s leg (St. Lucia) in an OECS Championship home and away contest, later this year.
Reports are that organizers have identified a date in December at which time they would make a second attempt at hosting the tournament.
This year’s tournament would be the first since 2002 when St. Kitts & Nevis defeated hosts Antigua 2-1 in the finals played at the Antigua Recreation Grounds (ARG).