Jun 26, 2022 Sports
2022 RFA Champions League…
As the 2022 Rupununi Football Association Champions League nears the halfway stage, competition for quarterfinal spots in Rupununi’s flagship football tournament has intensified. After a two years hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a record number of twenty six male teams and twenty four female teams from across the length and breadth of Guyana’s largest administrative region are participating in this year’s tournament. Faced with a plethora of logisitical challenges including intense flooding in the Region, a rise in the cost of fuel, and limited resources such as balls and match officials, the tournament has forged ahead and is set to culminate on August 20, 2022 with the grand finals scheduled for Aranaputa Sports Ground in the North Rupununi.
Due to the geography of the Rupununi and the vast distances between some villages coupled with the high cost of transportation, the Rupununi Football Association Executive Committee in an effort to ease transportation and other logistical hardships on clubs would have placed clubs close to each other, in groups.
In Central Rupununi which has a total of five male clubs and six female clubs, defending champions Guyana Rush Saints lead the male points standings with nineteen points after seven games, followed by perennial title contenders Tabatinga F.C. with thirteen points after six games. Gladiators F.C. and Snatchers F.C. are tied in third place with nine points each with only goal difference separating the two clubs. For the female clubs Guyana Rush Saints and Gladiators F.C. are both tied on thirteen points with Far East United third on nine points.
In North Rupununi which has two groups of three male and female clubs respectively,North Rupununi powerhouse Paiwomak F.C. male team heads the points standings in Group A with nine points after three matches while in Group B, F.C Basin heads the points standings with nine points from three matches. Paiwomak F.C. female team heads Group A with five points from three matches while Strikers F.C. heads Group B with six points.
In East Central Rupununi, which has two groups of four male and female teams , Jaguars F.C.male team heads Group B with six points from three matches while Moco Moco F.C. heads Group B with twelve points from four matches. Flash F.C.female team heads Group A with eight points from four matches and Moco Moco F.C heads Group B with nine points from four matches.
Over in South Central Rupununi, Shirriri F.C. male team has advanced to play Titans United F.C. of Aishalton Village after defeating Potarinau Sky Kings in a two legged playoff. Meanwhile Potarinau Sky Kings F.C. female team will play Titans United F.C in the female playoff after defeating Shirriri F.C in their playoff.
In Deep South Rupununi, Titans United F.C. male and female teams will play Shirriri F.C. and Potarinau Sky Kings F.C. respectively after Titans United defeated Snipers F.C. male and female teams in their playoff.
In South Pakaraimas, Seven K United male and female teams of Karasabai Village have already won the first leg of their playoff against Spartans F.C. and will hold high hopes of closing off the return leg at home on June 25 at Karasabai.
To date some of the matches have been high quality thrilling encounters while some have been lopsided with Guyana Rush Saints female team’s defeat of Rising Stars by a 19-0 margin one such game. In that match Glauciane Ines Gomes De Assis of Guyana Rush Saints netted ten goals, while Nina Cabral netted six goals in a stunning blitz that left the Rising Stars team in shock. Over in North Rupununi, Von Harding has scored one hat trick and two helmet tricks in three matches to lead the male goal scoring charts.
It is hoped that this year’s tournament will unearth new and emerging male and female football talent in the Rupununi with the objective of these players being called up to one of Guyana’s various national teams.
Even as the tournament is almost at its halfway stage, the Rupununi Football Association (RFA) continues to appeal for corporate support for the tournament which has gone a far way in unifying the people of the Rupununi, building social cohesion and togetherness, as well as ensuring many of the Region’s young and emerging players are gainfully occupied playing the world’s most popular sport.
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