Plans are well advanced to start the first ever Under-19 Section. under the auspices of the Lisburn Junior Invitational League, Harry Allen reports.
The hard working committee under the guidance of chairman, Stanley Sheppard, decided to try a League for this age group and the response to date has been satisfactory.
There have been ten or twelve applications received and the progressive officials are now certain to get it off the ground in September.
Surely, the new idea gives the new Minister responsible for sport, Paul Givan, a wonderful opportunity to follow up his early pledges to fully support all sports with a particular hope he can carry sport in Lisburn forward.
Local footballers will wait with bated breath for Mr Givan to lead the way in this wonderful opportunity.
The League is again proving popular at all ages, particularly the nine-a-side development set up, which was first initiated by Lisburn a few years ago.
There are again 56 teams in the under-11 and under-12 groups and that is the maximum Lisburn can accommodate. The teams in the nine-a-side groups are only allowed to play in two competitive competitions each year.
Personally, I believe they should have a League set-up, but the opponents of this line say the kids are there to be developed and focussing on results is all wrong. Who said they are never too young to learn how to lose gracefully?
The under-13 group is the one with a big change this coming season and 22 teams have entered. They will be divided into two sections and will have to learn how to win games and pick up trophies.
The other four groups - under-14 to under-17 - range in numbers from ten to around 14 teams. The 17s will have ten competitors this time.
It all adds up to another exciting season with strong competition which will be relished by all - win or lose.
Youth League Committee
The officers and committee who make the decisions in the Lisburn Junior Invitational League: Chairman, Stanley Sheppard; secretary, Barbara McGaw.
Committee: Chris Budd, Norman Donaldson, Graham Nixon, Aiden Gawley, Colin Scott.
Please note; the League would welcome new committee members to join their ranks.