Digicel Football is back! 148 schools to battle for supremacy from June 24


The Digicel School’s Football Championship, last held in 2017, is set for a grand return later this month.

This time, the telecommunications company is teaming up with the Petra Organisation to stage the nationwide competition, which will feature 148 schools from across the 10 administrative regions.

After the respective regional games, 32 teams will advance to a national playoff, which will take a knockout format.

Other partners onboard are the Guyana Football Federation, the Ministry of Education and the Guyana Olympic Association.

As has been the case over the years, the tournament will be held under the theme: Unite. Develop. Excel. The tournament will kick off on June 24.

The tournament will feature the best young football talents from across the country (Photo: News Room/Avenash Ramzan/June 6, 2023)

The format

Tournament Coordinator Lavern Fraser-Thomas said the decision to have a Round of 32 is to allow schools to have more playing time and wider participation at the national level.

Based on the tournament format, the champion team from Regions One, Two, Five, Eight and Nine will advance to the Round of 32, as well as the top three from Region Three, the top three from Region Six, the two finalists from Region Seven and the winner and runner-up of Region 10.

Region Four will be divided into three areas, with 13 Georgetown schools advancing, and two each from East Coast Demerara and East Bank Demerara.

As with all school football competitions organised by the Petra Organisation, the cash prizes will go towards a project at the school.

The champion team is guaranteed G$1 million, runner-up G$500,000, third G$300,000 and fourth G$200,000. Individual prizes will be for Most Valuable Player, Highest Goalscorer and Best Goalkeeper, while a group award will be given for the Most Disciplined Team.

What they said

Outgoing CEO of Digicel, Gregory Dean: “We’re very happy to be back. We’re thankful that the Petra Organisation has taken up the challenge…and it is a challenge dealing with 148 schools. The reality for us is we’re putting a platform out there, whether it’s for the GFF (Guyana Football Federation) or other organisations to spot talent.”

GFF executive Dion Inniss: “The GFF is extremely happy to see Digicel back as a stakeholder in the development of football. While our statutes particularly make mention of us spreading the sport throughout the length and breadth of Guyana, we cannot do this alone, so the Petra Organisation has to be singled out for all the work they’ve been doing over the years.”

President of the Guyana Olympic Association, Godfrey Munroe: “Partnerships like these are critical for the development of sport. From the Olympic committee side, we’re truly enthused by this action, because for a long time we’ve been looking at how we can integrate age group football into the Olympic cycle. As we move as a developing nation, it would be critical for us to have competitions such as these that help to unearth the talents moving forward.”

Co-Director of the Petra Organisation, Troy Mendonca: “I would like to congratulate Digicel for their consideration to sponsor another edition of this football tournament that we think will definitely continue to contribute to the development of the sport, especially where it provides an opportunity for schools throughout the 10 regions to participate. We expect a very competitive and entertaining tournament.”

Chase Academy won the last tournament in 2017, while Christianburg Wismar Secondary has been the most successful school in the history of the competition, winning four championships and finishing runner-up twice.

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