In what has turned out to be a race against time and a desperate bid to fulfill their more than decade old dream of a return to the nation’s top flight premier league; Wadadah and its hierarchy say they have been given until the end of business on Friday, October 1, to produce the documents and meet the criteria set by the competition’s department of the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) in order to compete in the one off play-off encounter.
Wadadah, third place finishers in the last play-offs back in 2019 is scheduled to engage Montego Bay United, the 11th place finishers in the last Premier League in a play-off for a return to the league on October 6, at the Captain Horace Burrell field in Kingston.
The game had originally been set for October 2, would see Montego Bay United, relegated from the League two seasons ago, given the automatic slot, should Wadadah fail to meet the criteria.
The winner would gain an automatic qualification to play in the Jamaica Premier League.
Head coach and operations manager of the team, Daniel Ricketts who made the requests public, told the Western Mirror from his offices on Tuesday afternoon that he had been given a deadline of 5 p.m. on Friday, “to come up with the documents”.
According to Ricketts, “the JFF has pointed out that the club must have a bank account to begin the registration of the club which has been in operation now for more than three decades”. But Ricketts further adds that in order for that to happen he must apply to Companies Office and be registered, a move he says is in process.
However he says because of previous ownership and the death of Gene Gray, the longtime founder and owner, and no executor or a will for someone to sign over the club the holdup has been ongoing.
He also disclosed that following several meetings recently it has been suggested to him in recent days that in order to make the registration with the Companies Office, he could leave off the ‘H’, naming the team WADADA.
He told the Western Mirror he accepted the suggestion and made the registration on Monday afternoon, and now awaits the process of setting up the vital bank account, a move he was actively pursuing late on Tuesday, September 28, when we spoke with him.
“Am heading out now to a particular bank to see how best we get an account set up and hopefully that works out in our best interest he adamantly declared, It’s another step towards the chance we have been given and we would like to give it our best shot, so we push on as a club with every stride, as we must have every document in by Friday”.
Despite not having all the pieces yet in place Ricketts who has been lashing out against the competitions department at the JFF for its handling of the matter, says he and his team have been going through the paces ahead of the possible match.
”We have been holding some training sessions while still trying to maintain the protocols set by the government, it has not been an easy task, but with each day we learn and try to move forward so, it has not all been doom and gloom at the club since we heard about this opportunity, he said. It’s been a while since Wadadah last played in the Premier League, so that in itself is a motivation for the youngsters, and me, once a player at the club and we would really like to make it happen”.
Wadadah was relegated from the then National Premier League, back in the 2006/07 season and has not been back there since.
Wadadah and or Montego Bay United will be hoping to replace UWI who dropped down to the lower league after withdrawing from the ongoing season due to financial constraints.