Town and PHC to play in Friendship preliminary round matches
Dandy Town and PHC, the top two teams in the Premier Division, will be involved in Friendship preliminary round matches in the new year, after yesterday’s draw at the Bermuda Football Association office pitted them against Somerset and North Village respectively.
Hamilton Parish, the First Division leaders, must compete in the lone preliminary round match in the Shield competition after they were drawn to meet BAA.
The Friendship and Shield matches have not been assigned to dates, though January 12 and 19 and February 2 have been set aside ‒ all Wednesday fixtures.
Town, who lead the Premier Division by seven points over PHC, were drawn against the Trojans, while PHC will play Village. The other match will see Devonshire Cougars taking on Somerset Eagles.
The draw was conducted by Shannon Burgess, chairman of the competitions committee.
The First Division, which has nine teams, has to eliminate one team so as to get to the eight-team Shield quarter-finals.
The Friendship Trophy is required to have three preliminary matches in order to get from eleven to eight teams for the quarter-finals.
The dates for the quarter-finals of the Friendship and Shield competitions are February 23 and March 2, 9 and 15. Semi-finals will take place on March 30 and April 6 before the winners advance to the April 13 final.
The Friendship and Shield finals had traditionally been held in April up to 2012 when it was switched to New Year’s Day.
This will mark the first finals in April in a decade though it is not certain if the switch will be permanent.
Last year’s Friendship and Shield competitions did not reach the quarter-final round on December 20, after the football season ended in early December because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Village and PHC were due to meet in the quarter-finals of the Friendship Trophy after Town, Somerset Trojans and Somerset Eagles were all ousted in the preliminaries.
The last Friendship and Shield finals were played in 2020 when Southampton Rangers beat Devonshire Cougars 1-0 in the Friendship and Devonshire Colts defeated Flanagan’s Onions 4-1 in the Shield final.