Times of India | 9 months ago | 11-08-2022 | 04:00 am
Panaji: Somewhere in 1973 when two cruise ships docked at a port in UK at the same time, a group of Chandor locals stepped out and decided to watch a football match together.They enjoyed the game, then started discussing the beautiful game and their village. It was here that the idea of a tournament sponsored by the local seamen took shape. Soon enough, the Chandor Seamen Rolling Trophy was launched.Organised by Chandor Club, the Chandor Seamen Rolling Trophy was inaugurated on August 15, 1973. Since then, according to club records available on its website, “the tournament is inaugurated every year on India’s Independence Day.”In the past, one edition was delayed due to a dispute with the Church over ownership of the ground and the organisers were forced to kick off the tournament in November. This year, for the first time in almost 50 years, there will be a break in tradition as teams have ruled themselves out.“We tried our best, contacted all teams, but everyone said they cannot make it on August 15,” said club president Felix Furtado. “The players are engaged in church activities or other village tournaments.”The Seamen Trophy, now in its 47th edition, will commence on August 14.“This is for the first time that we cannot have the opening on the traditional day and will instead start a day earlier which happens to be a Sunday. We are all disappointed.,” said Furtado.The disappointment would be even bigger for the Chandor Seamen Association, also founded on August 15.The tournament is organised jointly by Chandor Club and the Chandor Seamen Association which sponsors the prize money.The first edition was held in 1973 when Social Welfare Association of India, Benaulim, defeated Nagmodem, Navelim, to emerge champions.“There was no housie, no prize money, only cups for the winners, runners-up and 11 gold-plated medals for the winners and 11 silver-plated medals for the runners-up. All the cups and medals were donated by Chandor Seamen,” the club noted in one of its report available on the website.Today, the tournament is Goa’s second oldest existing inter-village football tournament after the Custodio Memorial Trophy in Raia. It offers a cash prize of Rs 70,000 for the winners.Since inception 49 years ago, the tournament was not held only three times.The first was in 1980 due to a dispute between the parish priest and the club. A police case was also filed as the dispute threatened to cause “breach of peace.”The Covid-19 pandemic meant no inter-village tournaments could be played in 2020 and 2021. The Chandor Seamen Rolling Trophy now makes a return, but, unlike in the past, not on the traditional Independence Day.