Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Glenmuir High School will get their LIME daCosta Cup title defence off and running this afternoon when they meet Zone M stablemates Denbigh High in the second match of a triple header at the Montego Bay Sports Complex at 5 p.m. today.
Their matchup will precede the Manning Cup opener between champion St George's College and former title holder Camperdown at 3:00 p.m. The third and final game of the evening starts at 7:00 which will pit Cornwall College up against Maldon in a Zone A showdown.
The focus, however, will be on the Clarendon-based Glenmuir side, who won the title for a third time last year. Long-serving assistant coach Warren Simpson assumed the reigns from the iconic Patrick Walters who spearheaded their three title successes in 2004, 2006 and 2012. Walters is now the new head coach at former kingpins Clarendon College
"We will be giving it our all from the opening game, which we are expected to win. However, while we are in a rebuilding phase, we certainly will be playing hard and good football, as we won't relinquish our title without a fight," charged Simpson.
Denbigh seek first win
For Denbigh, the opener could be sweeter if they can pull off a first-ever win over the defending champions - something they have failed to do in the 10 years that Garfield Carney has been head coach. But Carney, ever the optimist, thinks today could just be the right time to inflict what would most certainly be a major upset on the competition's opening day.
"We are plotting a way to stop Glenmuir in their tracks," revealed Carney. ... "We have done well in the four preseason games we have had and now things get going in earnest against the champions. It would be great if we can get a win to start the competition."
But the memory of last year's double drubbing in which Glenmuir hammered nine goals in two matches past Carney's Denbigh is still fresh in his mind.
"They took us to the cleaners last year over two games, winning by a combined score of 9-3, but I think today may be our lucky day," said Carney.
Meanwhile, the second daCosta Cup match of the opening day sees many-time champions Cornwall College gunning for three points against Maldon High, and with a new coach also at the helm, much is expected from the 11-time winners.
"This is a very important opening game for us as a win would settle the nerves and set the tone for the remainder of the season," said Dr Dean Weatherly, who returned to his old stomping ground to take charge.
"If it goes as our preseason did, just losing three of about 20 matches, then we will have a great season but we are looking first of all to make the Inter-Zone round and then perhaps step up a gear or two as we progress," he said.