Davis set to return from injury
ILLINOIS, United States: Jamaica will get a welcome boost going into their final group game of the CONCACAF Women's Championship (CWC) with the likely return of influential midfielder Omalyn Davis from a leg injury for the Reggae Girlz' crucial clash with Mexico tomorrow in Washington, DC.
Davis is expected to recover enough from a "mild strain" to the right quadriceps muscle to play a role in a match that Jamaica must win to advance to the CWC semi-finals or go home with another World Cup dream shattered. Costa Rica are already assured to move on from Group B.
Davis missed Jamaica's first two games - a 6-0 win over Martinique and a 2-1 loss to Costa Rica, respectively - when she was injured during a training session the day before Jamaica faced Martinique last Thursday. Her condition has improved, so Davis will join the CWC battle, according to Jamaica's coaching staff.
NEAR FULL FITNESS
"Omalyn will be OK to play on Tuesday," said Jamaica's head coach, Merron Gordon, after the Costa Rica game. " ... She should be somewhere around 100 per cent, close to full fitness."
Gordon said Davis could have played against Costa Rica, but Jamaica was worried the player, who recently underwent knee surgery which kept her out of the Caribbean Football Union qualification round, would suffer another setback that would rule her out of the clash against Mexico, long anticipated as a pivotal group decider.
"I could have pushed it (Saturday) to play her, but I chose not to," said Gordon. "I didn't want it to get worse because it's getting better."
Saturday's sub-50 degree temperatures and overcast conditions at Toyota Park here influenced the coach's decision as well.
"The time was so cold," he explained. "It wasn't conducive to putting her in."
But Davis will be able to play today, although Gordon declined to confirm if she would start the game or come off the bench. He insisted the entire Jamaica squad will be in line for duty.
"All 20 players are important to us now," Gordon said.
Against Martinique, Jamaica created - and squandered - numerous goalscoring chances. A far better Costa Rica team limited the Girlz' offence and put the defence under consistent pressure.
Davis, a veteran Jamaica international who has played professionally overseas, is a big plus for the Girlz, who, although appearing organised in their first two games, have been inconsistent in delivering a total all-round performance.
"She definitely has quality and experience," Gordon said of Davis, "and we could have used that (Saturday)."
Aside from Davis, the Girlz reported no other significant injury concerns and were scheduled to train after arriving in Washington, DC, yesterday afternoon and again today.
- Gordon Williams