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School football fans will have to wait a bit longer to witness who will hoist this year’s Under-20 boys title as the semi-finals and finals have been postponed due to unkempt conditions at the Antigua Recreation Grounds (ARG).
In a brief press release to the media, the news broke early Friday morning by the Interschool Football Coordinator Rowan ‘Porridge’ Benjamin.
“Due to uncleanness and the number of broken bottles on the field at the ARG, the organizers are forced to postpone the Finals of the Secondary Schools competition to Wednesday, 31st Jan semifinals and Fri, 2nd Feb finals. Any inconvenience is deeply regretted as the safety of players, officials, and fans takes priority,” the release stated.
The release did not detail what or whom would have been the cause of such conditions, but many in the public have begun to question if the recent One Nation concert played a role in it.
The semi-finals were initially scheduled to kick off on January 24th, with Ottos Comprehensive School (OCS) taking on Irene B Williams Secondary School (IBWSS) at 2 pm and All Saints Secondary School (ASSS) battling Antigua State College (Antigua State College) at 4 pm.
The finals were set to be played two days later, on January 26th.
The conditions at the Antigua Recreation Grounds have long been a sore topic for many Antiguans and Barbudans, many of whom reflect on the days of exciting and historic cricket matches being played at the grounds.
Many have called on the government to renovate the facility.
The government has previously announced plans to upgrade the grounds after a lease between the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association (ABFA) was recently terminated.
The double-decker stand was demolished, and some repairs were done to the grounds in preparation for last year’s Carnival festivities.