Ryon Jones, Staff Reporter
St George's College's first win at the institution's third annual pre-season football tournament is ominous for the other teams set to contest this season's Manning Cup competition.
The two-time defending Manning Cup champions won the competition for the first time since its inception, finishing with a maximum six points. The two-day competition, which was contested at the school's Winchester Park, also included Glenmuir, Calabar High and Clarendon College.
St George's pocketed $75,000; after defeating Calabar 2-1 on Saturday, thanks to goals from Oshane Boothe and Ryan Miller; and Glenmuir 1-0 on Sunday, courtesy of a 31st minute strike by Boothe.
Clarendon College earned $50,000 after finishing as runners-up following their 1-1 draw with Glenmuir on Saturday, and a 4-0 blanking of Calabar on Sunday.
Clarendon College's goals against Calabar were scored by Kyle Cummings (12th, 45th), Kemo Gayle (18th) and Xahane Reid (39th).
St George's College's coach, Neville 'Bertis' Bell, was not totally gung-ho over his team's triumph, as in previous years when they failed to win the pre-season tournament they went on to cop the Manning Cup title.
"It is kind of bittersweet because the first and second year we lost we won the Manning Cup," Bell said. "It is a good time for us to see where we are.
"I thought we played well in the competition, but we still have many more things to work on and we have a little while to work on it. It was serious enough for us to see the kids in good competition, as Calabar, Clarendon College and Glenmuir played pretty well also, so we are happy that we won."
Bell believes the team has numerous things to work on.
"Almost in every area of the park we need a lot of work," Bell revealed. "We are giving away the ball a little bit too easily, we make mistakes at the back, but goalkeeping was pretty good and was probably the best part of our game. We need to work in front of goal."
Despite reigning daCosta champions Glenmuir failing to secure a win in the tournament, assistant coach Richard Reid is confident that they can successfully defend their crown.
"We will defend our title, we are champions and we have to act like champions," Reid said. "We played our best, but we see some weaknesses that we need to fix and have corrected."
Jackie Walters, who coached Glenmuir last season, but is now in charge of conditioning Clarendon College, believes he can guide his new team to the title.
"Our main objective is to win the competition and we are looking forward to being in the final and becoming champions," Walters said. "We gave a reasonable performance, but one must understand that the season is almost two and a half months away and it is going to be demanding, so we are taking things in stride."