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Rugby Union set to acquire Dart land for new pitch

The grounds of the South Sound Rugby Club has long been home to the Cayman Islands Rugby and Football Union (CRFU) but President Derek Haines says that’s about to change.

“I was actually in Paris doing the Paris Marathon when I call from Dart. After a conversation, they offered the grounds.”

After years of preparation and fundraising, the association is packing it’s bags for Georgetown. CRFU is set to acquire a plot of land just south of the Esterly Tibbetts Highway, and Haines says it’s desperately need.

“South Sound rugby ground is in a beautiful location but there’s no room for expansion. In these days, where we are hoping to run internationals you really need two pitches.”

It’s 13 total acres: 12 of which Dart Real Estate will lease to the Rugby Union rent free for 99 years. One acre of government land in the south west corner, nearest to the Esterly Tibbetts Highway, sits in limbo. Haines says it’s the union’s final hurdle.

“Obviously it’s vital that we get (the 1 acre of land) agreed and signed up because you won’t be able to use a pitch with a wedge shape that’s not available.”

Haines is optimistic that won’t be a problem.

“I’m hoping by the end of the summer that all the agreements with Dart will be sorted so they can start clearing the land and filling it.”

Once it is leveled and filled, Haines says Rugby has spent the better part of a decade raising $4 million dollars to build the rest. He’s confident with the return on investment.

“We have the regional Under-19 Championships, and we have the regional Senior Championships, we have a growing female division as well.”

If all goes to plan Haines says ground will be broken this summer and will take two years to complete. A promising plan for one of Cayman’s oldest sports associations.

About the author

Jordan Armenise

Jordan Armenise

From Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, Jordan Armenise began his sports broadcasting journey with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League. It was in this role where he was able to merge his best attributes: sports knowledge and personality. While with the Ticats, Jordan provided live analysis and interviews while developing a digital portfolio of one-on-one interviews, episodic sports comedy and full length sports & news features. He has also worked with CBC Sports for Hockey Night in Canada, the 2014 Sochi Olympics and Special Olympics as well as roles with Cineflix and Cream Productions as an Assistant Director.

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