ISSA has dropped the ball – Jamaica Observer

Dear Editor,
The Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) has dropped the ball.
How can you have a final and not play it on neutral ground?
Manchester High School and Tacky High School played squared off in the ISSA Under-16 cricket finals on Tuesday, June 6, 2023.
Tacky High is a school in St Mary. They had to travel over 100km one way (over 3 hours as they could not afford the toll) to get to Manchester High for the finals. In order to be well rested and on time for the match, Tacky had to pay for overnight accommodation in Manchester. They got to Manchester High approximately 9:15 am for the 10:00 am start of the match.
The match was unable to start at the scheduled time because the pitch was too wet (not from rain). At 10:30 am the officials examined the pitch and decided that it was still too wet and therefore not safe for play. The match eventually got underway at 1:45 pm; however, it had to be stopped within the hour due to rain. Play was then called off for the day.
Since it was a final match to decide the champion, shouldn’t the match be played on neutral ground prepared by a professional? Both teams should have travelled to a neutral ground prepared by neutral groundsmen. One team should not have 13 players on their side and the other have the requisite 11. Give both teams a level playing field. Teams should be given the opportunity to win or lose fairly.
At the end of the first day’s play, batting first, Manchester was at 36 runs for five wickets. On day two the officials decided that there would be no play due to overnight rain and rain in the morning. Consequently, ISSA’s decision was that the trophy would be shared.
ISSA, tell me now, who is the ISSA rural Under-16 cricket defending champion for 2023?
Who will keep the trophy?
Who will play Excelsior, the urban area Under-16 champion?
How will the All Island Under-16 champion be decided?
Jasmine Williams
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