StGC, JC lock horns in Manning semis
St George's College (STGC) head coach Neville 'Bertis' Bell, said based on their record against Jamaica College (JC) in recent times, he likes his chances going up against the defending champions in today's ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup semi-final, scheduled for the National stadium at 6 p.m.
The highly respected Bell added that despite the disappointment of their Champions Cup semi-final exit to Cornwall College on Friday, they will be motivated and refocus for today's semi-final.
"Since 2007, JC and StGC are the only teams to have won (Manning Cup). We have a good record against them. The last three finals we played, we won two and they won one. We were the only team to beat them, 2014, in the Walker Cup final. We beat them 2015 in the (Champions) Cup final and they came back to beat us in the Manning Cup final. So we have a good record against them.
But they can say they have a good record against us also," he said.
"This is what we wanted. We wanted to win all titles. I want to play in big games, as it means you are in the competition for a while. So we look forward to this game and hope it works for us this time," he continued.
"We thank God we can win two titles. We can win the Manning Cup and if we win the Manning Cup, we can still win the Olivier Shield. Not many schools can say that. But if we don't win (today), it will not be because we are not ready. If it's God's will, we'll be ready. We are not going to make any excuses if anything happens (today) that we don't like. These are young players and they know what's at stake. So we certainly will give our best, but only God knows what will happen," he added.
His counterpart, Andrew Peart, said StGC's loss on Friday will have little impact on the game and he expects a difficult time against the former winners.
"Everybody plays their best game against JC, so you can't even look at the fact that St George's lost. They will be very tough, as they have proven throughout the season. One defeat does not make their season bad, but we will have to be prepared," he said.
"It will be different, a totally different challenge, so we expect another tough encounter. We are pleased with the performance this time of the season. But it's about us repeating or bettering the performances and that is the challenge for us," he added.
JC will look to Friday's hat-trick hero Aaron Elliot, Norman Campbell, Shadane Lopez, Tajay Smith and Javian Thompson, while StGC will depend on Chantomoi Taylor, Konato Campbell, Damani Harris and Emelio Rousseau.
In the other game, KC will start favourites against STATHS. However, STATHS will be hoping they can repeat their victory over the Purples in last season's semi-final. STATHS will rely on goalkeeper Jeadine White, defender Sekani Campbell, and striker Warner Brown, while KC's hopes rest on Ari Rogers, Treyvon Reid, Renato Campbell and Jahmal Pusey.