Shield showdown - Clarendon College vs Jamaica College at Juici Park
Marc Stamp, Gleaner Writer
Defending Olivier Shield title holders Jamaica College will be seeking their third title of the season when they square off with Clarendon College in the final to be contested over one-leg for the first time, at the Juici Park field in Clarendon today. Kick-off time is 2:30 p.m.
Manning and LIME Super Cup winners JC are hunting their 19th Olivier Shield crown, while Clarendon, the daCosta Cup champions have only won three times in the school's history. CC last held the trophy in 1998.
The LIME Super Cup, contested among the top-16 schoolboy football teams (eight rural and eight urban) is now seen as the new symbol of all-island supremacy but the Olivier Shield that began in 1909 holds significant history.
Now, the stage is all set for a battle between two top schoolboy football teams and spectators in Clarendon and those travelling from St Andrew to support JC could be in for a treat.
Not concerned about crowd
"We don't have an issue with the game being played in Clarendon. They (Clarendon College) will have crowd support, but we don't have any concern about that," JC's assistant coach Delroy Brown told The Gleaner yesterday.
"We are fully focused on getting the job done tomorrow (today). It will be a tactical match as Clarendon have been playing well the whole season and they have quality players," he reasoned.
"However, we are also aware that they don't score a lot of goals regularly. They play through the middle. It will be CC's hardest match to date. We are ready mentally and physically," Brown, a long-standing assistant coach at JC noted.
"The LIME Super Cup is now the symbol of schoolboy supremacy, but the Olivier Shield from a historical standpoint is the crème de la crème. We have won the Manning Cup and Super Cup, and missing out on the Walker Cup is not really a big deal. We would have loved to win the Walker Cup, but the main aim was the Manning Cup and Olivier Shield," he added.
JC's train will look to roll on with players such as captain and top marksman Junior Flemmings, Raffique Bryan, Sheldon McKoy, Allando Brown and goalkeeper Courtney Dowdie.
Looking forward to clash
On the other hand, CC's big win against STETHS has given them hope going against JC.
"We are really looking forward to this big clash. I expect a very good game," Clarendon's veteran schoolboy football coach, Patrick 'Jackie' Walters responded.
"This team is a fairly good one, but they have not hit the roof yet in terms of how they can play. I hope that will happen tomorrow (today)," he said.
"We have seen them (JC) on TV and they are a potent bunch. Football could be well-served," Walters, who has won Manning Cup, daCosta Cup and Olivier Shield titles with different schools said.
Clarendon will rely on Xhane Reid, who netted twice against STETHS, as well as Craigton Charlton, Seigel Knight, Andrew Gutzmore, Onando Collins and goalkeeper Eric Edwards.