Shillong, Jun 10: The U-18 Shillong Premier League, which was supposed to have started last Monday, will finally begin tomorrow in a match between newbies Sawmer and defending champions Shillong Lajong (pictured) at Third Ground at 3:30PM, the Shillong Sports Association (SSA) informed today.

The SSA chose to postpone the start of the tournament as Shillong was gripped by a violent standoff between police and protesters in certain parts of the city, though Polo was largely free of trouble.

The six games scheduled for last week will be played at a later date. Tomorrow’s match is the original fixture meant to be held on 11th June.

The U-18 SPL is contested by the junior sides of the clubs in the Shillong Premier League proper, except for the Meghalaya Police team. This year, however, will only see six teams participating after Shillong United dropped out.

Teams will play each other over two legs, culminating in a final between the top two sides.

Last season Langsning topped the seven-team league stage but lost to Lajong in the final 1-0. Stephanson Pale (of Langsning) was the competition’s top scorer with seven goals.

Lajong should be highly favoured to lift the title once again as they play their first match a little over two weeks after they won the U-18 Youth League, when they emerged as the national champions for the first time ever.

(TSR file photo)

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