'I am not worried'
Kingston College's (KC) track and field head coach, Neil Harrison, has hit back at his detractors three days after the school lost narrowly to bitter rivals Calabar High at the 2017 ISSA-GraceKennedy Boys and Girls' Championships.
Harrison considers last weekend's loss to be disappointing but he has challenged himself to overcome defeat with success after leading KC to three consecutive second-place finishes at the championships.
"I am committed wherever I am coaching. I have given it 100 per cent. The fact that I have not achieved the objective, it has made me a little stronger, and I always want to prove a point to people," Harrison outlined.
KC entered the championships the overwhelming favourites to unseat defending champions but were beaten by three points, 317 to 314, after Calabar won the final event of the meet, the 4x400 metres.
"Most of the people who are making noise have made no contribution to the programme. I am not daunted by them in any shape or form. I am not moved, I am not touched, I am not worried," Harrison told The Gleaner.
"I have been recruited by one Mr (Dave) Myrie, I am answerable to the principal, and until he says otherwise, I am quite fine," said the coach.
He admitted that the KC principal expected a win last weekend.
"... He (Myrie) knows we have the team to win. He understands what happened, because a lot of people thought that Friday night we would have been out totally, but we fought gallantly on Saturday, and he lauded us for our efforts. Yes, he wanted a win, but we don't have a principal who wants to win at all cost," stressed Harrison.
"I am an individual who is characterised by humility, and I was never ever a person to be overconfident. You will never find me on the media saying KC must win, or will win, even if we have the opportunity," he underlined.
"It's just very, very unfortunate. I did not succumb to any form of pressure. When you are a winner, there are many mothers and fathers; when you are a loser, you become an orphan. I think we were very unfortunate. We suffered injuries with Jhevaughn Matherson," he said. According to Harrison that was 18 points lost, as the athlete would have won both the 100 and 200 metres,
"KC also lost nine valuable points with (Wayne) Pinnock in the 100m hurdles when he also got hurt," lamented Harrison, adding that simple mistakes were made by some of his charges.