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Caribbean Cup match moved to National Stadium

Problem solved: Bermuda will take on Dominican Republic at the National Stadium next Saturday

Bermuda’s Caribbean Cup second-round match against Dominican Republic next weekend has been switched from the North Field to the National Sports Centre.

With the venue already booked for an exhibition rugby match and the North Field hosting the Hiscox Celebrity Cricket Festival during the day, it appeared as though Bermuda would have to play in front of fewer than 2,000 spectators in a night game at the North Field.

Common sense has prevailed, however, with it being decided at a meeting at the National Sports Centre yesterday that Bermuda’s potentially decisive game would be held at the home of Bermudian football.

It was attended by the Bermuda Football Association, the Bermuda Cricket Board, the NSC board of trustees, Hiscox Ltd and the Bermuda Rugby Football Union,

The football match will kick off next Saturday at 9pm, with the cricket festival to remain at North Field, starting at 8.30pm and finishing early to allow sufficient time for the rugby organisers to set up for Bermuda Barbarians’ match against Harlequins, which has been moved from the National Stadium.

The Atlantic Cup rugby match between the Barbarians and Aviva Premiership side Harlequins will start at 7pm, with Bermuda’s World Cup qualifying game against Bahamas to kick off at 4.30pm at the same venue.

An urgent meeting had been held on Thursday night at Devonshire Recreation Club after several BFA-affiliated clubs took exception to the Caribbean Cup match not being held at the National Stadium.

Later that evening, Hiscox Ltd told The Royal Gazette that the BFA “can have whatever they want, whenever they want, they just have to ask”, paving the way for the match against Dominican Republic to be switched to the National Stadium.

Hiscox said not only had it not been invited to that meeting, attended by both the BFA and BCB, but it had not been contacted about the conflict surrounding next Saturday’s sporting clashes.

The BFA would have had to cover the costs of upgrading the North Field to host the game against Dominican Republic.

Initially the CFU had agreed to Bermuda’s request to move next Saturday’s game to June 7, however, Dominican Republic were already scheduled to play French Guiana in the final group four match on that date.

At a meeting between the BFA, their French Guiana and Dominican Republic counterparts, and CFU officials in Mexico City during this month’s Concacaf Congress, the other two countries in Bermuda’s group objected to the decision.

As a result, the BFA had only four days to rearrange a match that will be crucial to the island’s hopes of progressing.

Bermuda are scheduled to play French Guiana in their opening group game in Cayenne next Wednesday.