Andrew Harris, Gleaner Writer
Over 15,000 persons turned out to the National Indoor Sports Centre yesterday as the FIFA World Cup Trophy tour, facilitated by Coca-Cola, gave locals an opportunity to get a glimpse of the iconic trophy.
The chances of Jamaica being among the final 32 nations at the showpiece FIFA World Cup Finals in Brazil next year may look blurry, but that did not affect the enthusiasm around the glistening trophy among Jamaicans.
Footballers at all levels, members of the entertainment fraternity, families, school groups and thousands of others from all corners of the island turned out to take part in the event which, according to many, represented the fulfilment of a lifelong dream.
Coca-Cola country manager Tamara Ward was extremely pleased with the turnout, underlining that the company did everything possible to ensure that locals would not miss out on the opportunity to see the trophy - a symbol of global domination and one that has been raised by some of the most celebrated players and teams in history.
"We are thrilled to bring this opportunity to Jamaica, as when Jamaica was deemed qualified to have the trophy, Coca-Cola was more than 200 per cent sure that it had to come here," said a cheerful Ward.
"We put a lot of planning into undertaking this initiative and the partnership with FIFA is a good one, so all the teams, both local and global, put a lot into it," she added "There has been an investment in football and we are passionate about it, so this opportunity is just a great one."
Ward also praised Guardsman Group for making the National Indoors Sports Centre the safest place for the trophy.
"Guardsman has been doing a great job and this is the safest place for this trophy to be in Jamaica today," said Ward.
The next stop for the trophy is the Cayman Islands.