By Franklin Wilson
As the leading manufacturers of flour in Guyana continues to celebrate its 50th year in existence, the National Milling Company of Guyana (NAMILCO) continues to maintain its corporate and social responsibility which among other things, empowers the nation’s youths.
Yesterday at the company’s Agricola, East Bank Demerara headquarters, the President of Fruta Conquerors led a delegation comprising of his executive members and two players to receive two sets of uniforms ahead of the clubs participation at the Concacaf Caribbean Cup Shield to be played in Curacao from April 5-15, next.
The competition forms part of the expanded Concacaf Club Competition Platform and will feature the participation of clubs from 13 different Caribbean Associations. Fruta Conquerors have been drawn in Group A along with Jong Holland, Scholars International Sports Club and Santiago de Cuba.
Prior to handing over the uniforms to the club, NAMILCO’s Fitzroy McLeod happily informed that the company over the years, since 2006 to be exact, has developed a profound respect for the leadership of the organisation for their transparency, accountability and for the work overall.
“Not just in conditioning their senior squad but also in developing young players, young minds – both men and women – and in actually putting in place an academy before they had a name for it.”
McLeod noted that this initiative has served the club and country well by providing a steady stream of talent that is ever present for senior teams of the club and country.
“Namilco is therefore more than happy where possible to assist with their project. We expect them to continue to be trailblazers and believe that their entry in the Concacaf Caribbean Cup Shield is a continuation of that trailblazing activity. We have no doubt that they will represent the club, NAMILCO and Guyana creditably on and off the field and in the process lift the profile of Guyana’s football and positively promote their stakeholder, spread the word of the value and quality of the Namilco Thunderbolt and Maid Marian lines of flour products.”
Thomas in his remarks informed that the value of the training uniforms provided to the club specifically for next month’s tournament is in excess of $320,000. Giving a brief on how the two entities started their relationship, Thomas said that it was back in 2006 when they partnered for the inaugural NAMILCO KO Festival, which was a much looked forward to tournament, likening it to the Kashif and Shanghai championship which teams had looked forward to annually.
“So as we celebrate their 50th anniversary as an organization, on behalf of the Fruta Conquerors executive committee, coaches, players, parents, fans and the general well wishers, we would like to extend heartfelt thanks to you Mr. Bert Sukhai and Mr. McLeod for your continued support to our club. May your organisation continue to grow from strength to strength, God Bless.”
Club President Gittens informed that his charges have been working on being fit for the competition which is important. He cited tactical awareness and endurance are traits need to last for the duration of the tournament which they intend to win.
The media was also informed that Coach Sampson Gilbert is also working on the nutritional side of the players to ensure they eat well.
“We have been supported by the Guyana Football Federation, they have lent us technical staff to give support to the head coach and we’ll like to thank them for that. If I’m to evaluate the readiness of the team, we are fully prepared for this competition and we are going forward to win.”
The president called on Guyana to lend its full support to the team since they are not just representing themselves but the entire nation.
“We need the full support of everyone, everybody have their comments but right now, positive comments is what is going to drive the players. So we encourage members of the public to be positive as well as the media and everyone who is capable of doing so.”
Fruta Conquerors will play the opening match of the competition on April 5th against Scholars International form 16:00hrs. Group A is the only group with four teams, Groups B, C and D has three teams each. Following round-robin play, each group winner and runner-up will advance to the quarterfinals. The quarterfinal winners will automatically qualify to the semifinals.
The two finalists will dispute the final on Monday, April 15, 2019. The winner of the 2019 Concacaf Caribbean Shield, provided said team fulfills the Concacaf Regional Club Licensing criteria, will have the opportunity to face the fourth-place finisher of the 2019 Flow Concacaf Caribbean Club Championship in a playoff match to determine the fourth Caribbean representative in the 2019 Scotiabank Concacaf League.
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