- Women’s Premier League kicks off in the Solomon Islands
- Eight teams involved in the league’s inaugural season
- “Now we can see a brighter future for women’s football”
Football history was made in the Solomon Islands over the weekend as the first matches of the country’s inaugural Women’s Premier League season took place.
The eight-team league, which consists of Koloale FC, Solright FC, Frigates United, RSIPF, Haura FC, Marist FC, Naha FC and Renbel ibis, will be played on a round-robin basis between now and late November.
William Lai, chairman of the Women’s Premier League and president of the Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF), declared it a major step forward for women’s football in the country. “After the hard work of everybody involved, I am so happy to see the women finally get the competition going,” he said.
“Women’s football is part of our strategic development plan for the 2020-2023 cycle and this league is just the beginning of the big plan. Our target is to move up in the OFC ranking in two years and I believe Solomon Islands will compete in our part of the world once we enter into our third season of the league.”
Solomon Islands Football Federation Women’s Development Officer, Antoinette Miniti, added: “I am excited to see the league finally kick off. It has been an intense few weeks just trying to get the competition set up properly and ensuring the teams are all ready to go. We have a few new clubs to the scene, so it will be good to see how they perform and how they develop along the way.”
Solomon Islands' capital city, Honiara, hosted four keenly contented matches to kick off the competition, the first of which saw Koloale FC defeat Frigates United 2-0. Koloale midfielder Cortney Suri, whose father, Batram Suri, was a Solomons legend, spoke of her pride at playing her part in history.
“I am thrilled to play in this first-ever Women’s Premier League match because we’ve have never had a well organised competition like this before,” she said. “In the past, we didn’t much support towards the women’s game in this football-mad country, but now we can see a brighter future for women’s football in Solomon Islands.”