Intense battles for Manning Cup second-stage spots
Excelsior High’s Thorne Buchanan (left) reacts under a challenge from Calabar’s Devaughn Gordon in their ISSA/FLOW Manning Cup last season. WITH THE ISSA/FLOW Manning Cup competition preliminary stage nearing completion, there are still a few things left to be settled, with a number of intense battles for the remaining spots in the second stage on the card.
Sixteen teams, comprising the seven group winners and runners-up, as well as the two best third-place finishers, will qualify for the second stage, which is set to start on October 24.
They will be divided into four groups consisting of four teams each, with the group winners advancing to the semi-finals.
Now, it is down to the wire for the nine remaining spots, which could be decided after today’s games spread across the Corporate Area and St Catherine.
Reigning champions Jamaica College are among seven teams already certain of spots in the second stage. The others are Kingston College and Denham Town High; from Group C; Holy Trinity High and Charlie Smith High from Group E; as well as Wolmer’s and Camperdown High from Group F.
Haile Selassie High are looking for a win against St Catherine High in this afternoon’s game at Barbican Complex set to start at 3:30 p.m.
The Geoffrey Maxwell – coached Haile Selassie is in pole position in Group D on 21 points from eight games, while St Catherine, who are under the guidance of Anthony Patrick, are currently on 17 points in third position behind Jonathan Denham Town’s Shane Pryce (left) heads the ball away from Norman Manley High School’s Javian Bryan in their ISSA/FLOW Manning Cup encounter at the Edward Seaga playfield recently. Denham Town won 1-0. Vauxhall vs Jamaica College Greater Portmore vs St George’s College Excelsior vs Tivoli Gardens Norman Manley vs Kingston College Denham Town vs Papine Ascot vs St Mary’s College Ardenne vs Meadowbrook Jonathan Grant vs Pembroke Hall Haile Selassie vs St Catherine Kingston Technical vs Wolmer’s Dunoon vs Camperdown Jose Marti vs Edith Dalton James St Jago vs Cumberland Campion College vs Bridgeport Calabar vs Hydel Clan Carthy vs Holy Trinity Waterford vs Mona (Home teams are named first and all games kick-off at 3:30 p.m.)
Grant High (19).
That means, St Catherine will have to gain maximum points to remain in contention for an automatic spot.
EXCELSIOR ATOP GROUP A
In Group A, Excelsior High are on top on 16 points, ahead of St George’s College (15) after Friday’s exciting 1-0 win, with Greater Portmore (13) next best.
Greater Portmore must win against many-time champions St George’s College to have a chance of making the second stage.
Excelsior are expected to get the better of lowly Tivoli Gardens and maintain the lead.
In Group G, Bridgeport are on top on 20 points, ahead of St Jago High (16), Hydel (15), and Calabar (15) as the teams in contention.
Bridgeport should continue their impressive run when they play away to Campion College. St Jago are expected to get the better of Cumberland, while it’s anyone’s guess in the HydelCalabar game.