Dethroned ISSA Grace/Kennedy Boys and Girls’ champions Calabar have once again found themselves at the centre of the storm after members of the student body were caught making derogatory chants on camera.

In the video making the rounds on social media, a large number of students, seemingly at a general assembly in the school’s auditorium, utter disparaging chants that suggested members of the Kingston College community were a derogatory term used to describe homosexuals.

It was Kingston College that claimed bragging rights in the latest instalment of the rivalry, after ending the seven-year dominance of the Red Hill Road-based institution, last weekend at the boys' championship.  The videos have already been widely condemned.  The school has already quickly apologized for the event, with a delegation of teachers and students expected to head to Kingston College tomorrow as part of a conciliatory outreach effort.

The organization found itself under fire, ahead of the championships, for the handling of disciplining high school track students Christopher Taylor and D’ejour Russell following allegations of assault made by a physics teacher.

  Although the incident happened in December, the teacher had suggested that the students not be allowed to participate in Champs after being allowed to take part in track and field events despite being suspended for five days by the school.     

Kingston College (KC) head coach Leaford Grant believes better man management, which limited the workload shouldered by individual athletes, was a key factor in a record ISSA Grace Kennedy Boys and Girls’ Championships-winning performance on Saturday.

The north street-based team put together several powerful performances, which led to the highest ever points total of 395.5.  The points total, which was good enough to dethrone champions Calabar but was also a record for the games, eclipsed the previous mark of 368.5 set by the dethroned champions.

Grant revealed that the unprecedented success was brought about by a break with traditional practices of sorts, which often sees athletes compete in as many events as possible.

“What we tried to do was not to overburden the athletes.  We tried to use one athlete per event so that we did not put a lot of pressure on our athletes,” Grant said.

“Probably in the past you would have seen a number of athletes doing more than one events at Champs.  We realized have so many athletes doing more than one events put a strain on the youngster’s bodies,” he added.

“We decided that we weren’t to do that this year. The results were fewer injuries and we had a good Champs .”

En route to winning their first title since 2009 and dethroning seven-time champions Calabar the Purples suffered did, in fact, suffer very few injuries and mishaps.

 

 

Kingston College scored a massive 395.5 points to break the Calabar stranglehold on the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championship at the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica on Saturday while Edwin Allen continued their run of wins after holding of a big challenge from Hydel High School. 

Jamaica’s Kemoy Campbell, the country’s 3000, 5000, and 10,000 metres has inspired a focus on the health of athletes at the ISSA Boys’ and Girls’ Athletics Championship after his collapse due to a heart issue created a very real scare. 

Manning Cup champions Kingston College were not at their ruthless best, but nothing should be taken away from the performance of Clarendon College, who became the first Rural-Area team to hold on to the Olivier Shield.

Those were the sentiments of Kingston College coach Ludlow Bernard after his Corporate Area champions were bested 1-0 courtesy of a brilliant goal from substitute Andre Nicholson in the 87th minute.

However, KC did have their chances to make their mark on the game before Nicholson’s strike.

“Today was a perfect example of us not taking our chances and they capitalizing on one of the few they would have gotten,” said Bernard.

The entertainment value of the game was high for Bernard and he thought that was important and that his time pushed the pace.

“But I thought today was a good game of football for the crowd. We did entertain, we did try to get goals and even before they scored we thought that we had it but they found something and kudos to them,” said Bernard.

KC were missing a couple of it’s stars injured skipper, Casseam Priestly and Ari Rodgers, however, Bernard believes that while those absences were notable and could have made a difference, his team should have done better in front of goal.

“I believe it did affect our performance today but I believe in the guys we had out there. I think they gave a gallant effort out there,” he said.

“We wanted to do it for Casseam and Ari, but that’s just life. It is just one of the lessons to be learnt. When some of our key persons are out some of our other players have to step up. We got some very good opportunities early and had we capitalized on them, probably I would have been doing the last interview.”

The 2018 Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association Olivier Shield final takes place on Saturday at 6:00 pm inside the National Stadium as Kingston College (KC) and Clarendon College face off in the final match of the senior schoolboy football season.

The Olivier Shield brings together the ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup champions and the ISSA/Wata daCosta Cup champions in a clash to decide the best schoolboy football team in the country.

The Olivier Shield was contested in a home-and-away two-leg format with the possibility of the title being shared if the scores were tied after two games. However, the format was changed by ISSA to a one-leg format following the 2013 season which meant the title could no longer be shared.

KC won the Manning Cup on November 30 to take the title as best urban area senior football team, while Clarendon College were crowned best rural area senior schoolboy team on December 1 by winning the daCosta Cup title.

Urban area schools have dominated the Olivier Shield over the last 13 years. During that period urban area schools secured 12 outright titles, except in 2006 when Bridgeport High shared with Glenmuir High.

Clarendon College will be looking to break that the urban-area dominance and win their fourth Olivier Shield, following victories in 1977, 1978 and 1998 when they shared the title with Dunoon Technical.

KC will be searching for their 10th Olivier Shield title following outright victories in 1949, 1952, 1957, 1964, 1965, 1975, and 1986. They shared the title twice, with Dinthill Technical in 1981 and Rusea's High in 1985.

KC will enter the Olivier Shield battle high on confidence as their Manning Cup title ended a very long championship drought in that competition.  They defeated North Street neighbours St George's College 3-2 in a dramatic final, at the National Stadium in Kingston, to win the urban area’s biggest schoolboy football prize for the first time in 32 years.

The Ludlow Bernard-team had to come from behind  twice with the winning goal coming at the death.

The victory handed KC their 15th Manning Cup title, the third most successful team in the history of the competition.

Twenty-four hours after KC’s triumph, Clarendon College earned the right to meet the North Street-based school in the Olivier Shield when they turned in a big performance to beat Cornwall College 2-1 at the Montego Bay Sports Complex for their eighth daCosta Cup title.

The Lenworth Hyde-coached team prevailed despite playing with 10 men for most of the match following the ejection of goalkeeper Tafari Chambers in the 14th minute.

Clarendon College ended the competition with a perfect record but the title was also a special moment for Hyde, a former Clarendon College star, who became the first to win the daCosta Cup as a player and then as a coach.

Hyde won the competition as a player in 1977 under the guidance of coach Winston Chung-Fah.

Both schools take impressive records into the Olivier Shield.

KC won 15 of 18 games over the Manning Cup and the all-island Champions Cup Knockout heading into the Olivier Shield. During that period they scored 70 goals and conceded eight. On the other hand, Clarendon College won 15 of 16 games over both competitions during which they scored 65 goals and conceded five.

 

Both schools have only suffered one defeat, which came in the opening round of the Champions Cup.

With both teams on a high an interesting Olivier Shield battle looms.

Kingston College head coach, Ludlow Bernard, the man who brought the Manning Cup title back to North Street for the first time in 32 years, has asked that everybody look to the players for all the accolades that should come with breaking a long, long losing streak for the former football kingpins.

Bernard oversaw a massive final that also doubled as a North Street Derby with neighbours, St George’s College. The game included five goals and had all the drama and plot twists of good final, with KC coming from behind twice to earn a hard-fought 3-2 win.

“A little birdie told me today that coach you’re going to have to work for this one. A lot of goals are going to be scored and you’re going to have to play catch up,” Bernard told SportsMax’s Shawana Ebanks after the game.

“I have a bunch of boys who are full of fortitude. They told me when they were down 2-1. My captain said to me, ‘coach, wi goin’ win it’,” said a more-animated-than-usual Bernard.

Bernard singled out Nathan Thomas for praise, saying he was going to substitute him but found an obstinate player demanding that he remain on the field.

“I was going to take off Nathan Thomas and he said, ‘no coach, don’t take me off. Believe in me. Believe in me.’ And he scored the winning goal. That man neva score a goal yet!,” said Bernard.

“I have a bunch of boys who are full of fortitude. They told me when they were down 2-1. My captain said to me, ‘coach, wi goin’ win it’. We are not going to lose this.”

Bernard said even as his spirits waivered, the boys remained full of belief and for that, all credit should go to them.

“’We owe you this one’,” Bernard said his charges told him.

“I must take my hat off to these boys. They won it. They said they wanted it and they delivered and that was what the brave is made of.”

Kingston College (KC) are Manning Cup champions againt after 32 years of watching others lift the coveted urban area football crown. 

The 2018 urban area Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/Digicel Manning Cup final takes place on Friday, with Kingston College (KC) and St George’s College battling it out at the National Stadium in Kingston at 6:00 pm.

This will be the first meeting between the schools in a Manning Cup final and the battle is the first football final between them since 2011 when St George’s College prevailed 2-1 in the Walker Cup Knockout.

St George’s College are widely considered favourites to pick up their 23rd Manning Cup title by virtue of eliminating five-time defending champions Jamaica College (JC) at the semi-final stage, but KC will be motivated by the prospect of trying to win their first title in 32 years.

The coaches are expecting a good battle, but Bernard believes his team needs the title more.

Bernard said, “there is a lot at stake, 32 years of being in the wilderness and that's the objective of the Kingston College team to end that drought.

“St George's will have their own ambitions, but I think we need it more than them. The boys are very optimistic about their chances and very upbeat about their expected performance.”

Neville ‘Bertis’ Bell, who guided St George's College to five of their 22 Manning Cup titles with victories in 1992, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012, said  “we are pretty confident. Preparations have been going well. We wanted to be in the final and we know it's going to be hard work for us. It's been hard work all season.”

Both schools are undefeated in the competition from 16 games, but KC have managed to gain a better record in all areas going into the final. This will be the third meeting between the two North Street-based schools this season as they played to a 1-1 draw in the preseason Roper Cup and then battled to a 0-0 result during the quarter-final stage of the Manning Cup on October 24 at the Stadium East field.

KC came into the 2018 season with arguably the strongest squad on paper, but there were doubts over whether Bernard would be able to get the best out of talent at his disposal.

But after easily getting through the preliminary stages and the second round, KC lost their perfect win record at the quarter-final stage where they dropped four points from two games (0-0 vs St George’s College and 1-1 vs Charlie Smith High) before beating Camperdown High 2-0 to qualify for the semi-finals for a second straight year.

In the home-and-away preliminary round of the competition, KC won their 10 games and during that stage, they rammed in 52 goals and only conceded one compared to St George’s College, which won eight of their 10 games, scored 39 goals and conceded four.

Both teams also secured easy passage to the quarter-final stage. KC defeated Cumberland High 3-1 and 6-1, while St George’s College beat Mona High 4-1 and 3-0.

In the quarter-final round, both schools were placed in the same group and ended with five points each from three games with KC winning the group courtesy of goal difference.

It was at the semi-final stage that St George’s College earned the tag of favourites as they defeated a very tough Jamaica College side 2-1 on November 20 and made the final a North Street affair.

KC had earlier defeated last season’s beaten finalists St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS) 2-1 in a repeat of last year’s final-four match to make the final for the first time in 17 years.

Interestingly, St George’s College had hammered STATHS 5-0 in the first round of the rebranded all-island Champions Cup knockout competition, 10 days before KC’s 2-1 Manning Cup victory over the Spanish Town Road-based school.

But although St George's College will enter the final as favourites, the momentum is with KC, which have won two football titles over the last two seasons. In 2016, Bernard led KC to the Walker Cup and then in 2017, he guided them to the all-island Champions Cup and based on momentum, the Manning Cup title awaits KC and Bernard in 2018.

Before the Manning Cup final, both teams will also clash in another championship match - the Under-16 final at 3:30 pm.

Corporate Area schools dominated the first stanza of the ISSA Champions Cup after the round of 16 came to an end all over Jamaica today with four of the six games going down to penalties. 

After coming to a crashing halt in the ISSA/Wata DaCosta Cup title race at the quarter-final stage, St Elizabeth Technical, an unseeded ISSA Champions Cup team believe they have no choice but to win. 

Kingston College and St George’s are second and third in their ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup group after they played out a 0-0 draw at Stadium East on Saturday.

Kingston College were favourites to win the Manning Cup last year but were disappointed after being beaten by St Andrew Technical High School (STATHS). That meant the second time they would miss out on a final berth after being a step away in as many years. They want to make a difference this time around and the coach, Ludlow Bernard, a former KC boy himself, believes it is the right time to break their 32-year lean spell.

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