Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Defending champions St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) will once again battle Paul Bogle High in one semi-final of the 2013 Ben Francis Knockout competition, and both coaches are signalling that their team has the advantage, which will be held at Juice Patties complex in Clarendon.
In the other semi-final, Manchester High, fresh off their 1-0 quarter-final elimination of Clarendon College last Saturday, will take on big-dreaming Green Pond, who dismantled William Knibb High 4-1 to keep their aspirations alive. They will meet in Santa Cruz at STETHS.
Last year, Paul Bogle travelled to Santa Cruz and were defeated in uncharacteristic fashion, as they allowed STETHS too much space and in the end lost out on the chance to make the final. Danger man Khesanio Hall had a terrific game then and should feature again. His 23 goals so far show his love for scoring and imminent danger to the Paul Bogle defence.
yes, we can!
Paul Bogle did make the final in 2010, but were defeated by STETHS, and head coach Richard Williams believes he knows what to expect from their rivals.
"One thing is certain," he said, "we are sure we can beat them. This year, we are on target to go to the final again, and we have STETHS in our way, but we are not afraid of them and will prove that when we meet."
The St Thomas-based school has so far tallied 30 goals in both the daCosta and Ben Francis Cups, but Williams noted it has been a total team effort.
"We have been playing well, scoring goals, but it's really a team effort. The goals are shared around, and it's always a good sign when that happens," Williams said. "We just want to put on a good show and perform well enough to win, and that is the plan."
STETHS coach Omar Wedderburn is also confident of pushing past their rivals. He said his team has been playing nowhere near full potential, which makes them quite ominous.
"We don't think we have reached our target yet, but we are certain to do well. We have been playing at around 50 per cent of our ability, and once we click into high gear, teams we face will know.
"Simply put, we are confident of doing well against this Paul Bogle team," added Wedderburn.
3 p.m. - Green Pond vs Manchester High at STETHS
3 p.m. - STETHS vs Paul Bogle at Juici Patties complex