Western Grandstand- Cornwall College’s win, a major positive
While I am not entirely pleased with the quality of the football that is being played here in western Jamaica, I must admit that I am quite pleased Cornwall College has emerged 2016 daCosta Cup champions, their 12th hold on the coveted title, which is symbol of rural high school football supremacy.
At a time when Montego Bay is being plagued by all types of devilish happenings, to include an out-of-control crime problem, I am sure this bit of good news has helped to lift the spirit of many residents of this beleaguered city, where positives have taken a back seat to negatives for far too long.
While it looked at one point that the Cornwall College team was about to unravel after their devastating loss to Wolmer's in the lucrative FLOW Cup final, it was good to see the Dr Dean Weatherley conditioned team showing the required depth of focus and character to bounce back and claim daCosta Cup glory.
Although Cornwall College fully deserves to be the toast of the town, I believe their opponents and fellow western contenders St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) should also be commended, not only for making the final a memorable one, but also for being exemplary champions during their reign.
One of the things I found most refreshing about the gracious manner in which STETHS accepted their defeat was a congratulatory message from the school's principal Keith Wellington.
"Sincere congratulations to both Cornwall and Lennon who deservedly took the dacosta Cup and Ben Francis trophies," Wellington wrote.
"Merron (Gordon) and Lennox Rowe are deserving champions! I am proud of you both! From our many conversations all year I know how much you both wanted to win something this year and I am happy you did!"
While Wellington must be disappointed in not winning a major title this year, it was good to see that he did not throw his team under the proverbial bus, but instead hailed his players for their determination, describing their season as a "winning season," albeit an empty-handed on.
As far as Montego Bay is concerned, I hope this win will breathe new life into the city's football, which has been in steady decline for over a decade, despite the recent success of Montego Bay United FC in the Red Stripe Premier League football Competition.
It is my hope that gifted young players like Jourdaine Fletcher and Peter Lee Vassell will herald a new generation of stars.
While we are nowhere near the glory days of the 80s and 90s when the city was the undisputed capital of national football, I believe that having the coveted RSPL title and the equality coveted daCosta Cup in the city at the same time must be a sign that we now have the foundation on which to start rebuilding.
As one who has been around Montego Bay's football for so many years, I know the kind of positive energy football success can bring to the city in unifying communities.
Since this Cornwall College team features players from all across the city, it would be nice to see a platform of peace emerging.
Having endured so many years of youngsters from Montego Bay making the news for the wrong reasons, I do hope that our city's fathers will now seek to capitalise on this positive energy Cornwall College has created.
I believe the team should be given the keys to the city of Montego Bay and taken on a road tour through the various communities, including the volatile ones.
Once again, I must say congratulations to the Cornwall College players, support staff and the supporters who all proved themselves good ambassadors for Montego Bay as even when the team suffered defeats in the FLOW Cup and Ben Francis Cup, they remained the embodiment of good sportsmanship.