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North Field to host two second-tier matches

Vasco play their first game of the First Division away to Devonshire Colts at North Field on Sunday. Vasco are returning to local football after an 18-year absence

The National Sports Centre will host league games for the first time when a First Division double-header is staged at North Field on Sunday.

The second-tier teams will grab the spotlight in the first weekend of league matches as no Premier Division matches are scheduled because of Bermuda’s involvement in the Concacaf Nations League Qualifier.

Kyle Lightbourne’s team face Aruba in Curaçao on Sunday.

Police Field is unavailable this weekend because of the Gregory Grimes Memorial Tournament is being held at that venue.

Young Men’s Social Club will meet St David’s at North Field in the 12.30pm opener before Vasco kick off their first season back in the league after an absence of 18 years against Devonshire Colts in the 3pm fixture.

Vasco, who withdrew from the Premier Division in 2000 after back-to-back league titles in 1997-98 and 1998-99, will be hoping for a strong start to the First division, which has been increased to 11 teams. They will play their first home match at Bernard Park against Wolves on September 22.

Flanagan’s Onions, the other relegated team, have kept the nucleus of their squad from last season.

Onions, who lost only Omar Wilson to Dandy Town, begin their campaign against St George’s at Goose Gosling Field. St George’s have lost attacking players Jahron Dickinson and Donavan Thompson to Premier Division X-Roads while Jarazinho Bassett has switched to Southampton Rangers.

Rangers, who were denied promotion despite finishing unbeaten in the league, will make another push for promotion under coach Jomar Wilkinson, who led them to the FA Cup final in his first campaign in charge.

Rangers lost Makonnen Lowe and Akale Bean to promoted side Paget Lions and Jamel Hill to Somerset Trojans, but picked up Travis Wilkinson from Paget and Caldre Burgess from Dandy Town.

Rangers open their season with a trip to Malabar Field to meet Ireland Rangers while Wolves host Hamilton Parish at Garrison Field, their new home venue after leaving Devonshire Recreation Club midway through last season.

Hamilton Parish will be hoping things can improve under new coach Corey Hill and returning pair Shayne Hollis and Chris Caisey from North Village and Robin Hood.

Parish have also signed four players from Social Club: Andrew Samuels, Reid Trott, Giovanni Saltus and Menelik Rudo.