Beach football enters semifinal stage, breaks for Carnival

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By Neto Baptiste

Four teams have qualified for the semifinal round of the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association’s Beach Football Tournament at Barefoot Bar located at Pensioners Beach.

Pigotts Youths, All Saints United, Old Road and Parham, all advanced to the next phase of the tournament following victories last weekend.

Pigotts Youths defeated Hatton 8-2, Old Road mauled Pigotts Sr. 10-1, Parham edged Five Islands 4-3 while All Saints United won by default over Belmont FC.

Tournament coordinator, Janiel Simon, explained that the tournament will take a short break before returning after the Carnival celebrations for both the semis and the final.

“We are definitely going to take a break for the Carnival and we are going to try our best to promote the final four and hopefully, on the Good Morning Jojo Show we will have the draw because we haven’t come up with the match-ups as yet so we want to make it a bit exciting for the public and or the team itself but so far, I have to give special thanks to Cool & Smooth and Desmond also for sticking with us over the last few weeks and the teams that have come out and showcased their skills, and for me, it has been an exciting last few weeks,” he said. 

The former national goalkeeper explained further that the facility will also be given time to recuperate before the hosting of the semis and the final.

“Playing beach football on the sand for any amount of time it helps to bind the sand so the sand has become a bit hard so we want to use that time to get the pitch area in good condition and also to take a break for Carnival and then come back with the final four on 11th August,” the coach said.

Simon said the league has, so far, served its purpose.

“Usually, every time we come back from either a World Cup qualifier or Caribbean Cup qualifiers we also go back to the same thing of having to find new players, coaching over the same technique as in teaching the players how to play the game, the rules of the game, so I think that if we have this league, it will help to bring a lot of players differently from the players who usually comes to the beach games, so we have a wider scope,” he said.

The semifinals and finals are slated for 11 August.    

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