Staff Correspondent

Belgaum: The city-based Royceton Gomes Memorial Sports Organisation will organise the annual inter-State level ‘Royceton Gomes Memorial Football Tournament-2009’,a prestigious event organised in memory of Master Royceton Gomes.

There will be two main events — Invitation Cup and Memorial Cup. While the matches for ‘Invitation Cup’ will be held from July 18 to 22, the ‘Memorial Cup’ matches will be conducted from July 24 to August 7.

Six teams, one from Mumbai, two from Goa and three from Belgaum city will compete for the Invitation Cup, on league-cum-knockout basis. For the Memorial Cup, 19 teams from local schools will be participating. Both the tournaments will be played on St. Paul’s High School ground in the city. The final match for Memorial Cup Tournament will be played on August 7, 2009, to mark the birthday of Royceton Gomes.

According to the organisation’s chairman Joe Gomes here on Thursday, these tournaments are being organised to foster friendship, inculcate moral values and discipline, develop talent, striving for physical development and helping young boys to grow into strong citizens. For further details, interested may contact Mr. Gomes on Ph: 9449735002.

In memory

The history that precedes these tournaments dates back to August 25, 1979, when a little boy, Royceton Gomes, aged nine, was studying in standard 3 at St. Paul’s High School in Belgaum city. On that fateful day he went on a picnic with his father to Gokak Falls. Royceton left the house all excited, but never to return.

He met his end in a shallow canal adjoining the dam at the picnic spot near the falls. The hazardous waters swept him away. Later, his body was recovered after a search operation. His parents were in shock.

Royceton had been fond of football. It drove his father, Joe Gomes, to start a football tournament in his memory. In 1981, a few of his father’s close friends started the tournament on St. Paul’s grounds. Over the years it has gained popularity and today, after 27 years, the tournament is one of the most-looked forward to annual event. Participants are not only the local schools but also teams from Mumbai, Pune and Goa.