DESPITE Alloway's withdrawal from the Bundaberg Premier League for this season, the inaugural Jim Harkness Memorial Shield competition, will go ahead this Saturday.
Alloway and Across The Waves football clubs introduced the pre-season challenge with trophies for both premier league and reserve grade games, honouring the master coach who championed both clubs in a distinguished career before his premature death as a result of a stroke a few years ago.
Waves club president Michael McLachlan said after discussion with his Alloway counterpart John Tootell, the two clubs would battle it out for the reserve grade Harkness Shield at the Across The Waves Sports Complex this Saturday at 6pm.
"The Premier League Cup will not be contested this year but Alloway will be looking to field a premier side next year, so both games will be played at Alloway this time next year," McLachlan said.
"To keep in the carnival spirit intended for the day, ATW approached Brothers-Aston Villa to play two preliminary games, under-17s at 2pm and the premier league clash at 4pm.
"Villa were great in agreeing to these games at short notice and they are not totally out of place as Jimmy had some association with Villa as well, and I have arranged a couple of small trophies for these two matches as a bit of incentive."
The games will be an appetiser for the start of the Football Bundaberg season one week later, which will feature the inaugural Challenge Cup clash between 2011 premier league grand final winners Moore Park and league champions Diggers on a revamped opening day.