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February 5, 2013
Star Sport


Reggae Boyz warm up for Mexicans

Adrian Mariappa ... key man in defence. - file photos

The full 23-man Reggae Boyz squad for tomorrow's opening World Cup final round qualifier against Central American kingpins Mexico have now assembled in Mexico City.

A number of the players had long trips from Europe and on arrival in Mexico were allowed lots of rest ahead of the first full training session which took place at 5:30 yesterday afternoon.

Je-Vaughn Watson, who replaced the injured UK-based forward Jermaine Beckford has also arrived in Mexico.

It is expected that Jamaica will follow up yesterday's training session with one at the match venue tonight at the scheduled match time of 8:30 p.m. in Mexico City (9:30 Jamaica time).

In addition to getting used to the altitude, thin air and pollution in Mexico City the players will also have to become accustomed to the very cool nights in the Mexican capital. Last night there was light rain with temperatures dropping to 600F at 8 p.m Mexico City time.

It is generally believed that the Reggae Boyz will take an ultra-defensive approach in tomorrow's match as the team which will parade a number of new players, will have had only two full training sessions ahead of tomorrow's match.

Recent history has also shown that the Mexicans can be surprised by teams which are prepared to defend well and mount the occasional counter-attack. Defenders Nyron Nosworthy, Jermaine Taylor, Adrian Mariappa and Demar Phillips and robust defensive midfielder Rodolph Austin will therefore be very key men for Jamaica in tomorrow's game.

Last August, Mexico completely dominated the the Jurgen Klinsmann-coached United States in a friendly at the Estadio Azteca but ended up losing as the Americans kept them out before snatching victory with a swift counter-attack late in the game.

Jamaica squad:

GOALKEEPERS: Dwayne Miller, Donovan Ricketts and Duwayne Kerr. DEFENDERS: Nyron Nosworthy, Damion Stewart, Alvas Powell, Adrian Mariappa, Demar Phillips, Jermaine Taylor. MIDFIELDERS: Jermaine Johnson, Omar Daley, Tramaine Stewart, Rodolph Austin, Marvin Elliot, Jason Morrison, Joel Jobi McAnuff, Jermaine Hue, Andre Lewis. FORWARDS: Dane Richards, Jevaughn Watson, Garath McCleary, Theo Robinson, Ryan Johnson.

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