The Theodosia Okoh Hockey Stadium in Accra will come alive on Saturday, April 27 when 20 clubs converge to fight for the 2019 Sapholda Gala trophy in their respective divisions to usher them into this year's hockey season.
While defending champions Exchequers have embarked on intensive training, and look determined to retain the 2018 Sapholda Gala trophy they won in the men’s division, Royal Men of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) -- beaten finalist last year -- are also gearing up for a big challenge alongside teams like Police, Reformers and Legonites on Saturday.
The battle promises to be equally fierce on the female side as dethroned champions Royal Ladies of GRA, winners of the 2018 Sapholda Hockey League, are also looking to avenge the loss of the 2018 Gala trophy to Police Ladies.
In the absence of their dependable player, Nafisatu Umaru, who is now plying her trade in Italy, Police Ladies will have to rise to the occasion to deal with the threat from contenders like Royal Ladies, who are bent on retaining the trophy they won last year.
Last year’s Seniors champions, Sapholda, face strong opposition from Citizens, Golden Sticks, Multistix and NDK Financiers.
In the Youth division, defending champions Real Ambassadors, are tipped to retain their trophy but must fend off stiff competition from Tema Manhean, Kasoa Heroes, Ark Boys, NDK Financiers and new entrants, Accra Academy Boys.
The competition, which pushes off as early as 6 a.m, will see all teams at the various divisions playing against each other to accumulate points. Two teams with the best points build-up from each division will play in the final to determine the 2019 Sapholda Gala champion.