BY JOHN HOUANIHAU
The official draw for the SIFF Invitational Beach Soccer Championship 2023 took place in the VIP room at Honiara’s Lawson Tama Stadium today.
Ten beach soccer clubs within the country were selected and organized into two groups at the official draw of this year’s Invitational Beach Soccer Championship, which will take place from Monday 26 June to Saturday 1 July at the DC Park, east of Honiara.
The draw itself was conducted by Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF) Competition Manager, Paul Baekalia and SIFF Beach Development Officer, Dickson Kadau.
The teams were drawn as follows:
- Team Kwikwi
- Sunrise Beach Team
- Guadalcanal Hornets
- HFA Beach Team
- Canaan Olagegeu
- Honiara Titans
- Karaina Beach Team
- Kamros Beach Soccer Team
- Real North
- Western Kikio
“As we know, a squad has been selected since the last championship and since that time there is no other SIFF competition, thus, the office and department have seen this championship to prepare the team for qualifiers to be held August this year,” SIFF competition Manager, Paul Baekalia said.
“SIFF gave out an invitation to the 10 Provincial Football Associations (PFAs) affiliated to SIFF and an open invitation to any clubs which is not endorsed by PFAs to compete at the Championship.”
He said that at the closure of the invitation, they come with 10 confirmed teams.
“We have Kwikwi endorsed by the Malaita Football Association (MFA), and Real North, Guadalcanal hornets endorsed by Guadalcanal Football Association (GFA), and Honiara Football Association (HFA) beach boys endorsed by HFA, are the teams encoded by the PFAs.
“The six lucky clubs after screening the applications since there are many that manage to bid for the competition are Cana’an Olageugeu, Kamros, Sunrise, Karaina, Honiara Titans, and Western Kikio. Two from Malaita and the other four, Sunrise, Karaina made up mostly of boys from Temotu province who resides in Honiara,’’ Baekalia said.
Meanwhile, SIFF Futsal/Beach Soccer Officer Dickson Kadau said that since the current national beach soccer squad (Bilikiki) is comprised of old players, the upcoming championship is a time to scout for new and eligible players to be included in the squad.
“So, the upcoming SIFF invitation beach soccer competition is where we will scout for new potential players from the provinces and will see what the next step to be taken by SIFF in preparation,’’ Kadau said.