Rural, urban showdown

...St George's vs Cornwall, JC vs STETHS in Champions Cup semi-finals

Observer writer

Friday, November 16, 2018

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TWO former champions from the urban area and two former finalists from the rural zone will clash in today's semi-finals of the ISSA Champions Cup all-island football competition at Sabina Park.

St George's College, the 2015 champions, will take on 2016 runners-up Cornwall College in the first game set to start at 5:00 pm, followed by 2014 winners Jamaica College meeting 2017 runners-up St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) with the winners meeting in the final set for next Saturday, November 24.

The massive clashes is the third day of high-tension schoolboy football games following Wednesday's ISSA/Digicel Walker Cup final won by Hydel High over Excelsior High and yesterday's ISSA/Wata Ben Francis KO semi-finals at Juici Field in Clarendon.

All four teams will be full of confidence following good wins in last weekend's quarter-finals and while the Corporate Area pair and Cornwall College are into their second semi-finals of the season after qualifying for the top four of the Manning Cup and the daCosta Cup respectively, the Champions Cup will be the only silverware that STETHS can win this season.

STETHS will be seeking to end their two-year run of not winning a trophy, but will face a tough Jamaica College team waiting for them.

Both teams came from behind to win by 2-1 margins last weekend – STETHS beating Charlie Smith at the Montego Bay Sports Complex, while Jamaica College defeated Holy Trinity.

So far in the Champions Cup, defences have been able to prevent STETHS' Ronaldo Webster from scoring, but the agile and skilful striker will still attract attention from the Jamaica College defenders.

It took a penalty conversion from goalkeeper Devonte Clarke and one from second-half substitute Adam Griffiths to get past Charlie Smith, but Webster who scored 21 goals in the daCosta Cup, Christophe Murray and Tajay Green must step up if STETHS are to have a chance to make it to the final two straight years.

Jamaica College's Norman Campbell leads all scorers with three goals from their two games, including two in last weekend's come-from-behind win over Holy Trinity.

The first champions are yet to concede a goal in their two Champions Cup games after easing past Mile Gully High 4-0 in the first round.

In the first game, Cornwall College and St George's College will be meeting in a competitive game for the first time since the early 1980s when they met in the Olivier Shield, then the only symbol of all island supremacy.

St George's College are yet to concede a goal in the competition and are coming off a big 5-0 spanking of STATHS last weekend led by overlapping left-back Emelio Rousseau who has scored in both games.

Five players have scored for St George's College in the competition with Chantomoi Taylor also getting two goals and will also be a threat to the Cornwall College defence.

Cornwall College, who lost in the 2016 final conceding in time added on, struggled against Wolmer's Boys in the first round before winning on penalty kicks, and after giving up possession to Camperdown in the first half last week, stormed back in the second period to dominate.

A fit Aiden Jokomba was the difference for Cornwall College as he pressed the Camperdown High defence all evening after limping through the two previous games with a knee injury.

Jokomba, who has scored 18 goals so far this season, is expected to operate on one wing with the fleet-footed Solano Birch on the other side, and Shavon McDonald or Matthew Thorpe expected to come through the middle.

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