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December 28, 2012
Star Sport


Portmore set for schoolboy boost
Jermaine Lannaman, Star Writer

Left: Penwood's Clifford Shaw (right) tackles St George's College's Cordell Benbow during their ISSA/Gatorade/Digicel Manning Cup clash. Right: Andre Lewis

Portmore United coach Andre Waugh says he is eagerly anticipating the return of St George's College midfielders, Andre Lewis and Cordell Benbow, as the team seeks to strengthen their position at the top of the Red Stripe Premier League.

Benbow and Lewis, who played lead roles in helping St George's College retain their all-island Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA) Olivier Shield and Manning Cup crowns, are expected to provide Portmore's coaching staff with added options.

Portmore, the defending champions, currently trail Harbour View by seven points at the top of the table, with the former having amassed 31 points to the latter's 38.

Montego Bay United also have 31 points, but an inferior goal difference to that of Portmore.

"We plan to look at the talents that are available out there when the transfer window reopens in January, especially as it relates to players of a younger age group," said Waugh, following his team's hard-fought

1-0 win over Tivoli Gardens at Ferdie Neita Park last weekend.

"We have a number of players, who will be coming in from the high school competitions, most noticeably the St George's pair Andre Lewis and Cordell Benbow, who upon their arrival, we are looking forward to them making a difference."

Lewis, a central midfielder, and Benbow, a wily winger, are considered two of the country's brightest prospects, with both having progressed through several national age-group teams.

They were members of Jamaica's team, which participated in the 2011 FIFA Under-17 World Cup in Mexico, and are currently members of the Jamaica Under-20 team, which last month qualified for the final stage of the FIFA Under-20 World Cup CONCACAF qualifiers.

Lewis was also earlier this year a part of the Reggae Boyz squad on their trip to Guatemala for their semi-final round FIFA World Cup CONCACAF qualifier.

Benbow and Lewis are unable to participate in the Red Stripe Premier League, prior to January, based on a Jamaica Football Federation-proposed understanding with ISSA, which is geared towards preventing player burn out.

The ISSA football season runs from September to December. Portmore, who missed the end of first round final by a point, were led to victory over Tivoli on a blast at the top of the area from forward Alanzo Adlam in the 66th minute.

Tivoli, in losing, slipped to eight position on 26 points.

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