Sun | Dec 8, 2019

Schoolboy football returns today

Published:Saturday | September 7, 2019 | 12:17 AMKavarly Arnold/Gleaner Writer

The ISSA Schoolboy Football season kicks off today with a triple header at the Montego Bay Sports Complex in Catherine Hall that will see two games in the ISSA/WATA DaCosta Cup and one ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup fixture.

In the curtain-raiser at 2:30 p.m., defending DaCosta Cup champions Clarendon College will take on Lennon High in Group H.

The second match, set for 5 p.m., will feature Manning Cup champions Kingston College up against Excelsior High in Group G.

In the late kick-off at 7 p.m., 2018 ISSA Champions Cup winners Cornwall College, who will be playing in their backyard, will face Irwin High in Group A.

Cornwall head coach Dr Dean Weatherly, who is confident that they can get the job done, is also mindful of their inexperience and is looking to approach the game cautiously.

“It’s going to be a tough one because both teams are going to start out slowly, trying to figure out where we are,” Weatherly said. “With our team being so inexperienced, for a lot of them, this will be their first DaCosta Cup and in front of such a large crowd. We just have to go out, keep them motivated with a positive outlook and see how we do on the day.

“Preliminary games will always be preliminaries. We have to use them to iron out the kinks so when we get to the next round it can be a smoother sail.”

Irwin head coach Norman Foster is looking to exploit his inside knowledge, from his time as part of Cornwall’s support staff, in what he admitted will be a difficult game nonetheless, given their reputation.

“Yes, of course, a difficult game against Cornwall,” he said. “They are always one of the top schools that people gravitate to in the competition while Irwin is just trying to come to the fore. I just hope that my boys feel the enthusiasm of the game, come out and put on a good show.

“Preparation this week looks great. So, hopefully, they can stick to the task and we come away with a victory. It’s not that I know all about the players that much, but I know what Cornwall stands for and what they bring. It’s just for my boys to grasp what I said to them and play to instruction, which, hopefully, will lead to us getting the win.”