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Prize money doubled for Guinness Street ball

Published:Thursday | March 26, 2015 | 12:00 AMLeighton Levy

The Guinness Street Football Challenge, that is being held in Jamaica for the first time, has been such a hit, the organisers have moved to increase the number of teams for each match day from 16 to 32.

They have also doubled the prize money for the winners from $100,000 to $200,000. For the match day in Kingston on May 31, 64 teams will contest that parish play-off for a whopping $300,000.

Acting brand manager for Guinness, Andrew Anguin, believes all the indicators suggest that so far, the competition has been a major success.

"It's been two match days, with Match-Day Three coming up in Santa Cruz on March 29, and it's been absolutely amazing," Anguin said. "We have had a warm welcome from the communities, where everyone, it seems, has come out to support their teams."

For the first match day in Spanish Town on March 1, more than 3,000 persons turned out to support their teams, Anguin said. At the Allandale Community Centre in Westmoreland on March 15, rain prevented large numbers from turning out, but still, many persons braved the inclement weather to support their teams. But the turnout has not been the only indicator of success.

good quality

"The quality of play has been great. This is a Caribbean tournament, and we're trying to find a Jamaican champion, and the quality has been good and the matches competitive," said Anguin, who also revealed that the number of teams registering has exceeded their expectations, with over 150 teams registering to play.

It's why Guinness has opted to increase the number of teams participating on each match day from 16 to 32. For the Kingston leg, 64 teams will participate. As such, the prize money going forward will be increased from $100,000 to $200,000, and for Kingston, $300,000.