Move to Egypt was in best interest of family — Lowe

Sport

Move to Egypt was in best interest of family — Lowe

BY SEAN A WILLIAMS
Deputy Sport Editor

Tuesday, December 01, 2020

Print this page Email A Friend!


Damion Lowe's move to a club in faraway Egypt can easily be viewed from several angles by the curious of mind.

But for him, it was pure business, with the future of his family as the key deal breaker.

Lowe, 27, will also have the distinction of being the first Jamaican to ply his craft in the respected Egyptian topflight when he recently signed a two-year deal with Al Ittihad, the six-time Egypt Cup champions.

The club, based in the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria, boast the third largest football fan base in Egypt, a country whose clubs have won the African Cup of Champions a record 15 times.

But for the Reggae Boyz stand-in captain, the lure to the land of the Pharaohs was driven in the main by self-interest and the opportunity to broaden his football horizons.

“It was the most attractive offer [on the table] when it comes to securing me and my kids future,” Lowe told the Jamaica Observer from Alexandria yesterday.

“I have to do what's best for me and my family. This is securing my well-being. I appreciate everyone's opinion, but in the end the decision was mine to make,” he added.

Lowe, who has steadily improved his game over the past few years, was linked to clubs in Italy and Qatar up to a few months ago, but those deals fell through.

Even though his journeys have taken him to transcontinental Egypt for the moment, expectations remain high — that based on the quantum leap in the quality of his game — the lanky central defender should before long be playing in more glossy leagues.

“I'm glad that everyone believes that [I should be playing in bigger leagues], and I also believe that, but if the offer doesn't come, I cannot go.

“I'm not disappointed in myself [that I have not got the big deal], and I never will be, as I've come a long way and I have built my career from the ground up,” said Lowe.

Now that the former IK Start standout has committed to fight for Al Ittihad — as he is known to do everywhere he goes — he hopes his pioneering exploits in that part of the world will “open doors” for other Jamaicans.

“That's always my aim that wherever I go I try to work hard and open doors for others. The Middle East has been an attractive market and now a Jamaican is in the mix and is looking to excel,” Lowe said.

The former Harbour View FC youth player says he has been warmly received by the club's top brass, other staff and his fellow players.

“Everything has been going well. I have recently found out that the president [Mohamed Moselhy] is from Dominica. Everyone is happy I have joined and has been very kind and professional towards me,” Lowe said.

The Boyz defender, who has excelled in the USA leagues since making his full professional debut, says he has set goals in keeping with those of his new club.

“I always want to win trophies and it's also a part of the club's rich history. But first, I would like to get settled and get sharp and do well. Everything else will fall into place,” Lowe shared.

Al Ittihad is due to face another giant of Egypt's Premier League Al Ahly in the semi-final of the Egypt Cup today, and Lowe finds the prospects mouth-watering as he could get his baptism of onfield action.

“We are in the semi-finals in the Egypt Cup [and] I am expected to play, but I am awaiting international clearance,” he disclosed.

Before signing up for his Egyptian crusade, Lowe — the son of France '98 veteran Onandi — had a carer-boosting spell when he helped, in large measure, to guide Phoenix Rising to the shared United Soccer League Championship title with Tampa Bay Rowdies.

Both Phoenix and Tampba Bay were due to contest the all-conference final of the USL final, but the match was called off due to positive COVID-19 cases discovered among players of the Florida outfit. It was then decided that the title should be shared.

“Phoenix is a big club and with a very professional environment, so I am glad I was able to go in and prepare myself to make a move,” Lowe said.

The Jamaican international recently led his country in two friendly international matches against a neighbour of Egypt, Saudi Arabia.

In the first match, the Boyz were outclassed 3-0, but returned three days later to defeat the hosts 2-1 in a vastly upgraded rendition that has received wide applause.


Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at http://bit.ly/epaper-login


ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT