by Romeo Monteith, Date: 17/7/12
The Jamaica Rugby League Association has announced the 17 players that will face Canada at the Lamport Stadium in Toronto on Saturday, July 21 at 7pm. The Reggae Warriors as the national team is known, will battle the Wolverines for the second annual Caribbean Carnival Cup, currently held by Canada after their 40-10 victory last year. The squad will depart the island on Thursday and return on Sunday.
Canada is currently positioned 21st in the Rugby League International Federationâ€™s World Ranking while the Reggae Warriors are 23rd.
National Coach Romeo Monteith expects a tough challenge ahead, â€œSeveral boys struggled last year with the conditions affecting our ability to breathe properly. The air is colder and thinner there and we really suffered. It will be the same this year and our players have to be mentally tough and adjust quickly. Also, our boys will play on Astro Turf for the first time, which is a new and unknown elementâ€.
The Jamaican squad has been going through their paces at the University of the West Indies and GC Foster College and will feature 16 domestic based players. The â€˜outsiderâ€™ will be Orlando Jones who is based in Canada. â€œWe are confident that the players we have selected will make us proud,â€ Monteith added.
Meanwhile, several national team members were in action on Saturday in the Jamaica National Club Championship where three games were played. Roy Calvert scored two tries to lead the Duhaney Park Red Sharks past Spanish Town Vikings 40-5. Omar Jones was crucial in Vauxhallâ€™s 42-16 win over Portmore Suns and Renaldo Wade watched from the side line as his team Maxfield Rookie Star Steppers upset the Jamaica Defence Force 38-26 at Up park camp.
Jamaica National Rugby League Squad:
Claude Yen, Fabion Turner, Jason Gooden, Khamisi Mckain, Kemoy Whyte Jermaine Pinnock, Roy Calvert, Robert Rodney, -Duhaney Park Red Sharks, Adrian Mckenzie, Adrian Myers, Ryan Grant, Ryan Spence, Stephen Scott â€“GC Foster College, Renaldo Wade-Maxfield Rookies Star Steppers , Andrew Fong, Omar Jones, -Vauxhall Vultures, Orlando Jones.