Competition manager Simon Koima announced at the weekend after meeting the franchise owners that Madang – who will play for the first time in NSL final since entering the competition – will host the two semi-finals.
The unofficial order of the semi-finals will be Lae City Dwellers taking on FC Port Moresby, while host, Madang, taking on the regining champions – Hekari – in the main game.
Koima brushed aside venue concerns relating to the standard of the Bomana pitch at the Correctional Services, Port Moresby, stating that Madang had requested to host the semi-finals if they were in the semi-finals.
“They did (get into the semis), that was the reason the league board awarded them the right to host two semi-finals,” Koima said.
“The NSL board on April 29 endorsed Madang to host two semi-finals after Madang team finished fourth behind Hekari, Lae City Dwellers and FC Port Moresby,” he said.
It is understood that Madang was selected ahead of Lae because of the last year’s NSL grand-final disruptions between Lae and Hekari in the city.
Port Moresby has no proper soccer field to host the semi-finals and grand-final because all the venues are currently being upgraded for the XV Pacific Games.
Madang Soccer Association and the Madang provincial government have a huge task on hand to ensure security and other logistics are in place to host the semi-finals of the premier football competition in the country.