Entering its fifth year, the Petra-organised tournament has re-emerged in a timely fashion — when strides are being made for the improvement of women’s football in Guyana.While it was an occasion to celebrate the launch of yet another Smalta Under-11 tournament, the topic on everyone’s mind was the contribution the tournament would make to the development of women’s football.Co-Director of Petra, Troy Mendonca, was the first speaker to get the ball rolling. Taking time to thank ANSA McAL for an opportunity to further the female league, he said, “Essentially, this continuous sponsorship caters for a very integral part of the enhancement of women’s football in Guyana; and, as such, we would like to extend a heartfelt ‘thank you’ to the ANSA Mc AL Group of Companies, through their Smalta brand, for supporting this venture over the years.”Following suit, the Guyana Football Federation’s (GFF) Youth Development officer Brian Joseph, speaking on behalf of GFF President Wayne Forde, had nothing but praise for both Petra and ANSA McAL, for their tireless contribution to the sport.“I think both of them (Petra and ANSA Mc AL) have been doing a tremendous job in terms of assisting the GFF with executing its football development strategy across the country. Couple of days ago, ANSA McAL, in partnership with the GFF, launched the ‘Always’ Women’s Football Development League, and that was a big occasion for women across the country. And I can easily see how, in a couple of years, these young girls sitting here will become the players in such a tournament,” Joseph declared.Thinking out loud, Joseph shared that it was always his hope the tournament would one day become a professional league.Representing the flagship sponsor, Non Alcholic Brand Manager Errol Nelson explained that the distribution company is happy to always be a part of such benevolent ventures.“ANSA Mc AL, over the years, has been one of the main supporters of football in Guyana. And just to let you know, we will continue to be heavily involved for many more years to come. We’ve been very happy with the growth and progression of female football,” Nelson stated.The tournament, scheduled to kick-off on November 17 and conclude on December 8, will feature 16 primary school female teams, namely: Marian Academy; Soesdyke; Tucville; South Ruimveldt; North Georgetown; F.E. Pollard; Enterprise; St. Pius; St. Ambrose; Timehri; Smith’s Memorial; St Agnes; Genesis; St. Stephen’s; Sophia; and St Margaret’s Primary schools. Prior to the beginning of their tournament, the Girls will have the benefit of receiving training sessions from the technical staff at the GFF. They will then head into their tournament which will take on a round- robin knockout format.The winning team will be awarded $200,000; whilst second, third and fourth place will receive $100,000, $75,000 and $50,000 respectively.