The National, Wednesday February 10th, 2016
By FRANCIS RODNEY PULU
THE second stage of the National Soccer League, the National Champions League, which was scheduled to kick off this weekend has been deferred pending an appeal from a franchise team says NSL board deputy chairman Dan Kakaraya in Port Moresby yesterday.
NSL competition manager Simon Koima when asked about the nature of the appeal would only name the club, Erema Gulf FC, but did not specify what the action was taken for.
New franchise Erema finished the regular season in fourth in the Southern Conference.
The appeal will be heard by the board on Thursday week where a decision would be made before the top four teams from the conference stage start their home and away games.
Kakaraya said with this appeal pending the draw and the top four teams from the conference stage would also not be announced until the outcome of the meeting.
Kakaraya said by considering the right of a franchise team to be heard they would make a decision based on the strength of the appeal.
He said with this the board would also like to apologise to the teams and asked for the patience as they addressed the matter before them.
“At this stage it is premature for us to specify the nature of the appeal but we will keep it until Thursday where a decision is made before the games starts,” Kakaraya said.
Koima also clarified the matter of points the top two sides from each conference had going into the Champions League stage saying the teams would start from zero and be essentially be on equal footing as they fought for finals berths and the minor premiership as well during the six-week long stage.
Koima confirmed that the top-placed side after the Champions League stage would be declared the minor premiers and would play the next best side in the 2016 final while the remaining two sides would play off for third place.
“The top two teams in the home and away games advance straight to the grand final while the other two face off for third place,” Koima said.
Koima added that other awards like the Golden Boot and the season Most Valuable Player (MVP)awards would be decided during the meeting next Thursday.
Koima when asked on the claims by Lae Dwellers management of intimidation by Madang fans during last Saturday’s fixture at Laiwaden Oval, Madang, said hewas yet to receive a report from the match commissioner but once they had the documentation would act accordingly.