Amidst persistent light drizzle, the curtains came down on the 2016 Republic Bank Right Start Cup Youth Football Tournament at the Athletic and Football Stadium last week Wednesday.
The three finals in the competition, which ran for eight weeks, were drawn from five different Parishes on the island.
This year, Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited which has been providing sponsorship for the tournament for the past years has pumped in $80,000.00 towards the tournament, which involves 21 secondary schools.
In what could best be described as a keen and tough match that was flavoured with the beating of drums, Mac Donald College retained the boys’ under-21 title by defeating St. John’s Christian Secondary.
With both schools displaying a high level of skills, they ended both the regulation and extra time nil-nil.
In the end it took a penalty shoot-out to make the difference where Mac Donald College took the championship and was presented with the winner’s cheque of $5,000.00 with the trophy, while St. John’s Christian Secondary was presented with a cheque of $2,000.00.
The individual awards in that competition went to Jeremy Richardson of Grenada Christian Academy for being the best goal keeper, the prize for best defender was awarded to Jose Mc Intosh from Mac Donald College, best midfielder was Rickel Charles of Happy Hill Secondary School, and the best forward prize was taken by Romar Frank from Happy Hill Secondary.
The Golden Boots prize went to Rahim Stephens of the Grenada Boys Secondary, while Jose Mc Intosh from Mac Donald College was awarded as the Most Valuable Player.
Coach Marcus Julien of Mac Donald College was also awarded.
GBSS won Zone One of the competition, the winner of Zone Two was Mac Donald College and both were given cheques of $500.00.
In the girls’ open, Happy Hill Secondary School (HHSS), failed to retain the title that it had won for the past two years.
The St. Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School (SAASS) walked through HHSS midfield and defense to take away the title with a close 3-2 victory.
For its efforts SAASS received the champion cheque of $3,000.00 along with a trophy, while HHSS was presented with a cheque for $1,500.00.
The best goal keeper award went to Sabrina Rennie of SAASS, best defender was adjudged to be Abigail Ebomh from St. Joseph Convent, St. George’s, best midfielder (Malia Ramdhanny) of Westmoreland Secondary, and best forward was taken by Roneisha Frank from HHSS.
Frank also scored the most goals to win the “Golden Boots Award.”
Cassie Rennie from SAASS was judged as the Most Valuable Player of the Tournament while Coach Leon Calliste from SAASS was also presented with an award.
HHSS won Zone one of that category, and Zone Two was won by SAASS.
The winner of each zones received a cheque for $500.00.
In the boys’ under-15, St. Mark’s Secondary defeated Boca Secondary two goals to nil.
A winner’s cheque of $2,000.00 was presented to St. Mark’s Secondary along with the championship trophy, while Boca Secondary received $1,000.00.
Each of the players of the six schools that made it to the finals received a medal.
Managing Director of Republic Bank, Keith Johnson expressed satisfaction over the competition, which is into its 13th year.
Johnson felt it was another year that showcased a lot of talent, with many high-scoring games, and new stars emerging.
He described the final three matches as being brilliant, especially the under-21 boys.
“It was really a magnificent finale to this year’s tournament. I want to congratulate the winners, to say thank you to all the teams that participated, the players, coaches, referees, Ministries of Education and Sports for collaborating with Republic Bank once more in bringing off a brilliant tournament,” he said.
Johnson also told THE NEW TODAY newspaper that the future for continued sponsorship from the bank looks very bright.
“We will continue to sponsor this tournament,” he promised.
A prize-giving ceremony followed at the end of each of the three competitions, which recognised not just the winners of the finals, but also the champions of the respective zones.
The winner of each zone received a cheque for $500.00.
In the boys’ under-15, the winner of Zone One was Boca Secondary, Westmoreland Secondary won Zone Two, while Zone Three title went to SAASS, Zone Four was won by St. Mark’s Secondary, and Hillsborough Secondary took Zone Five.
Individual awards were presented to Xavier Archer of Westmoreland Secondary for being the best goal keeper, Daniel Berkley of the same school for being the best defender, best midfielder was taken by Alwyn Coxie of Boca Secondary, best forward went to Ronaldo St. Louis from the St. Mark’s Secondary.
St. Louis also received the “Golden Boots Award,” and the Most Value Player of the tournament.
National Footballer Andrew Munro who coached the St. Mark’s Secondary School was also recognised in the prize giving ceremony.