Mayoral finalists Martin Walsh and John Connolly call for three debates

After emerging from a crowded field of candidates where it was difficult to stand out at a multitude of forums, the two final contenders for mayor were quick to decide Wednesday that they would only clash publicly three times, in televised debates, before the Nov. 5 general election.

In a joint statement released Wednesday, the campaigns for Martin J. Walsh and John R. Connolly asked the media to organize three debates, one a week between Oct. 14 and Nov. 1.

“After discussions between our campaigns, we agree that televised debates will provide an important forum for voters to gain the information they need to make an informed decision in November’s mayoral election,” the candidates said in the statement.

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“In addition, we believe that these debates would offer a broader platform for the many community groups wishing to have their substantive issues discussed during the campaign.”

During the preliminary stage of the election, which culminated Tuesday night when Walsh and Connolly were boosted into the final round as the top-two vote getters, candidates’ schedules were overwhelmed by countless forums throughout the city. There were often several of the gatherings during a single day, some even held simultaneously.

In the statement, the candidates said that because of the many demands on their campaigns, they are asking groups that sponsored the forums to work with local media to organize the debates.

The candidates faced off at Suffolk University on Sept. 9 in the only televised debate before Tuesday’s preliminary election.