THE 2013 edition of the Clarendon Captain's Bakery and Grill Major League gets underway today with the hope that the inclusion of Under-21 teams from Premier League clubs Sporting Central Academy and Humble Lion will add well-needed prestige to the competition.
Officially, Sporting and Humble Lion are guest teams, therefore cannot win the competition outright — that honour is reserved for the likes of Jamalco and highly rated newcomers Summerfield, who are expected to be the main title rivals. It is, however, not clear at the moment if both sides can win the prize money. But their intended significance to the competition outweighs dollar value.
The duo is expected to be the pull factor that will attract neutral supporters to be the quality on show in the parish's top flight-football competition.
Such is the reality in a parish where most fans only have eyes for the weekly Red Stripe Premier League games played at Brancourt or Effortville on a Sunday afternoon -- the same time when most Major League games are played.
Essentially, CFA will be hoping that the exciting young talent that both clubs are expected to field boosts the quality of the Major League.
Top age-group players from some of the parish's high schools, plus those players who are deemed not yet ready for first-team football, should form the bulk of both squads.
These youngsters are expected to be of a higher technical quality than most Major League players, who are most times not good enough to make any of the Premier League teams.
For Sporting and Humble Lion, the opportunity to play in the competition is welcomed. It gives them a chance to give their young players much-needed game time in the absence of their usual U-21 league due to financial constraints.
Meanwhile, the 12-team competition kicks off with a double-header at the "newly developed" Path-Side football field in Milk River, south-west Clarendon.
Summerfield take on York Town in the opening game at 1:00 pm, followed by the feature match between hosts Milk River and newcomers Comfort two hours later.
The games will be preceded by a brief opening ceremony at noon.