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Christchurch will again host the International Cup for the fifth year running, despite the uncertainty and travel restrictions created by the Covid-19 response.
The Christchurch International Cup has become the highlight on the calendar for young footballers in this part of the world and organisers were eager to offer players the opportunity to play against some the best talents from around the country.
Said tournament director Slava Meyn: “Most other big sporting events have been cancelled over the past few months, but we have pulled out all stops to get this tournament up and running, even though we had to scale back the number of teams."
Aside from the short lead-in time, the organisers also had to work around the rescheduled Mainland Football leagues that will this year continue during the school holidays.
“We have been working closely with Mainland Football who have been very supportive to find dates that can work for everyone,” said Meyn.
The tournament will now be held across the Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays of the school holidays, with the Under 10, U11 and U12 teams playing on July 6 to 8, while the U13 and U14 competitions run from July 13 to 15.
Due to travel restrictions, the tournament will this year not include any overseas teams, but the tournament organisers are still working with clubs from around New Zealand to make the trip to Christchurch.
“Last year, the teams from Auckland and Sydney dominated the tournament and we hope that many of our regular visitors from Wellington, Auckland, Dunedin and Nelson will be able to get to the tournament."
Meyn said that last few years, the CIC had 16 teams in each age-group, but this year has reduced the field to 12 teams. “But every team will still be guaranteed six games.”
Due to the late confirmation of the tournament, there are still a few places available in each age-group, so Meyn is encouraging clubs to sign up as soon as possible.
“First come first served, so if your team wants to play, get in quickly.”
For more information or to sign up, go to the tournament website at www.internationalcup.co.nz