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Acting Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner. (FP)

The Ministry of Tourism is promising to grow the sports tourism market and produce the British Airways Football Legends Invitational Tournament as a world class event that would drive scores of visitors to our shores.

Acting Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner intimated this during an interview with the Barbados Government Information Service after the launch of the Tournament at Kensington Oval, last Friday.

Emphasising that the sports tourism niche fitted well with the Ministry’s sports tourism thrust, she said the Football Legends who have been coming here since 2011 for a tournament, would generate considerable interest in media circles.

"Barbados is committed to welcoming all sports enthusiasts to explore and experience the amenities and possibilities of our home. Apart from football, we feature a wealth of sports prospects which include golf, tennis, motorsports, darts, hockey, swimming, cricket and athletics," Senator Sandiford-Garner added.

The Acting Tourism Minister also commended the organisers who will be donating the proceeds from the tournament to the development of the National Sports Council’s Primary School Football Programme as well as to the Barbados Football Association, to assist in their youth development programme.

Senator Sandiford-Garner also praised the players for "giving of their time" to assist several schools with football training sessions. These include The St. Michael’s School, St. Leonard’s Boys’ Secondary School and Ellerslie Secondary School.

"This augurs well for football in Barbados, since the nurturing of upcoming players from such an early age, will ensure that Barbados develops a cadre of talented footballers who can perform creditably on the world stage.?? We also hope that the Legends of the Premier League will ultimately become ambassadors as well as supporters of fund-raising activities [that are] geared towards assisting football development programmes for the youth," she noted.

julie.carrington@barbados.gov.bb

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