T&T will not be fielding teams at the Under-14 Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Boys and Girls Tournaments in the Dominican Republic later this week due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
T&T was set to be among 13 other nations to contest the tournaments which are being used for development. The tournaments catered for boys and girls born on or after January 1, 2006 and 2007, respectively. They (the competitions) were postponed from last year (2020).
The teams are expected to arrive in the Dominican Republic over the course of Thursday and Friday for the start of competition on August 22, with both finals set for August 29.
However, acting General Secretary of the football association Amiel Mohammed said they declined the invitation to send teams due to all the uncertainty surrounding the T&T border re-opening at the time they had to confirm attendance.
He (Mohammed) confirmed, however, that the invitation was heavily considered.
According to Mohammed: "The fact that we have had no teams in that bracket training or being generally active with SOE, having very little time to prepare, the threat of variants and exposing young athletes to the rigours of having to navigate competitive sport in these pandemic environments, it was decided that it wouldn't be best for the players."
T&T was among teams such as regional rivals Jamaica, Aruba, Haiti, St Martin (FR.) Bonaire, Turks and Caicos Islands, Curacao, Puerto Rico, United States Virgin Islands, Dominican Republic, St. Kitts and Nevis, Grenada and St. Lucia to compete.
A release yesterday stated that the competitions are designed to aid development within the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) and are open to participation of the thirty-one (31) Member Associations within the CFU body.