Sports

Barrett upbeat despite Cornwall's d'Cup slip

Thursday, December 06, 2018

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CATHERINE HALL, St James —While losing their first game of the season in the final of the ISSA/Wata daCosta Cup was a bitter pill to swallow, Cornwall College a ssistant c oach Warren Barrett says they had a lot to be proud of in the 2018 schoolboys' football season.

Cornwall College became the first Champions Cup team to win the ISSA Super Cup after beating Jamaica College 1-0 in the final a week earlier, but fell 1-2 to a Clarendon College team that played with 10 men for 76 minutes after goalkeeper Tafari Chambers was sent off for deliberately handling the ball outside of his area.

“It's a tough one for the boys as you can see they are very disappointed, but we are telling them not to allow this one loss to dampen their season as they had a super, super season,” Barrett told the Jamaica Observer as head coach Dr Dean Weatherly and other members of the management staff tried to console members of the team after the game.

“We have won the Champions Cup, the first for a daCosta Cup team, and we have written our names in the history books,” the former Jamaica captain said.

Getting to the semi-finals of the daCosta Cup was one of the goals the team had set in July, but getting to the final was taking that a step further.

“We made the final of the daCosta Cup, which only two of the nearly 90 schools that started the competition was able to do,” he reasoned. “Yes, we wanted to win, but on the day the better team won. You have to give Clarendon College credit [as] they really came and played well... we had an off day; too many of our better players didnt have their usual good game and at the end of the day, we paid for it,” he noted.

Asked if the team that was not considered a title contender even at the start of the quarter-final round had over-achieved, Barrett, replied: “I would not say that, but as the season progressed we improved gradually, and winning games and being undefeated for so long gave us confidence and belief and that is what happened.”

The former Reggae Boyz goalkeeper admitted that this team might not have been the best in terms of individual star players, but they made up for that with the intangibles.

“Is this the best Cornwall College team we have ever had? No! But I think in terms of camaraderie, that was what made the difference with the success we had this year,” stated Barrett.

He said he had a glimpse of what the team could do from early on.

“We were under the radar early in the season and it was always a work in progress... I saw the talent we had and I spoke to Shavon McDonald the team captain — and the senior players and told them that as long as we stepped up a notch from how we played in the first round, we would go far in this competition,” said Barret, a France '98 World Cup veteran.

Barrett said he was on the mark with his preseason predictions.

“Of the teams that I saw in the preseason, I thought Clarendon College and Dinthill Technical were favourites to me and we all made the semis, so it was not chance that they did so well either.

“Kudos to Clarendon College, the new champions, but I take my hat off to the Cornwall College boys,” Barrett ended.

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