Mon | Aug 21, 2017

Gran Bahia cop Sandals BH title

Published:Saturday | February 25, 2017 | 2:00 AM
Stacy Benjamin (third left), manager of the Gran Bahia Principe football team, accepting the Sandals Resorts International St Ann/St Mary Business House Football Trophy and cheque from Brian Roper (right), general manager, Beaches Ocho Rios; and St Ann’s Bay Mayor Michael Belnavis. Looking on (from left) are: Ian Spencer, Sandals regional public relations manager; Danny Beckford, president of the St Ann Football Association; Marcus Johnson, coach of Gran Bahia; and secretary of the St Ann Business House Football Association Georgia Douse.

OCHO RIOS, St Ann:

Gran BahIa Principe were the big winners at the presentation ceremony for the Sandals St Ann/S. Mary Business House (BH) Football competition, held at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort on Thursday.

Team manager Stacy Benjamin and coach Marcus Johnson received the Sandals Resorts International Trophy from Brian Roper, general manager of Beaches Ocho Rios, to thunderous applause from the large audience of members of the local football fraternity present at the event.

"We were tired of silver ... being runners up the past few years and last season it was winning the trophy or bust for us," said an ecstatic Johnson. "This team has been a joy to coach and we look forward to further success come next season."

Roper, in delivering the sponsors address, stressed his company's commitment to providing opportunities for the youth and unemployed in the community.

"This competition has allowed many young unemployed footballers to gain employment at the hotels and other business enterprises who are a part of the event and that speaks volumes to how serious we take our role as good corporate citizens," he noted.

"We have been sponsors for 24 years and will continue to show the community that we care, not just in football by our charity actions through the Sandals Foundation," the general manager noted.

Guest speaker, Michael Belnavis, the mayor of St Ann's Bay, also lauded Sandals for their continued sponsorship of the event and praised their role as civic leaders providing opportunities for young people.

The mayor disclosed that the St Ann Parish Council was currently in talks with Sandals as a group to assist with the upgrading of the Buckfield Community Centre.

Mayor Belnavis also pointed out that his organisation was looking at creating more partnerships with business organisations to assist in the development of sports as well as the local community.