Football unity

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SIFF President William Lai giving his remarks during the opening of the 2020 Solomon Cup Challenge yesterday. Matches for the Solomon Cup will kick off tomorrow at the Lawson Tama Stadium. Pictures Peter Zoleveke II
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Solomon Cup 2020 officially Open

BY PETER ZOLEVEKE II

IT was a fitting colorful array to welcome the ten teams who will be representing the provinces for the next two weeks of football actions in the National Solomon Cup 2020 – with the theme ‘IUMI TUGEDA THRU FOOTBALL.”

The opening ceremony yesterday gathered over hundreds from the general public, provincial representatives, players and prominent guests at the national level to witness the country’s major football event.

Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF) President William Lai in his remarks saluted the Solomon Cup Organizing Committee and SIFF stakeholders in bringing together the different races embraced under the banner of football.

“On behalf of the country’s football governing body I stand here to see what the game played to gather us all here today (yesterday),” Lai expresses.

“This year’s challenge is open for everyone, not only the best can win but everyone can win!

President Lai also assured that this year’s competition will be the final competition to be played on the current turf before it transitions giving way to a world standard complex for the 2023 Pacific Games.

Representing the national government, Ministry of Home Affairs Permanent Secretary, Mr. Jeffery Sade Deve said that the formal open of the competition signifies one of the main events the government and its stakeholders who are working tirelessly to prepare the country for the Pacific Games here.

“We are ensuring that the preparation for the regional competition is still on target. And I am pretty sure that some of you will be selected to be part of the National football team who will represent our country in the year 2023,” says Mr. Deve.

He continued emphasized on unity and equality through the sport.

“Athletes, when you step out on that field everyone are equal. Talent and skills, it means nothing. They may be more talented than you, but if you show more HEART if you show FOCUS,” he stressed.

“So, go there do your best, all you have is 90 minutes and I know everyone wants to win, but one thing is for sure. When you’re walking down from the changing room, and you step on the field – you know in your heart only there will only be a winner. And the best team wins.

Yesterday only eight teams were part of the opening ovation, Temotu Arrows are yet traveling to the capital via ship due to the distance and Makira Ulawa were engaged in a friendly match against a Telekom S League side.

Meanwhile, matches will kick off on Saturday 28.

Western Tomoko vs Guadalcanal Hornets – 1PM

Malaita Eagle vs Lauru Kukuvojo – 4PM

Reigning Champions Malaita Eagles team with their cultural dancers pose for a photo after the opening ceremony yesterday at the Lawson Tama stadium. Photo Peter Zoleveke II

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