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18-man U-21 squad named
Keisha Hill, Staff Reporter
THE JAMAICA Hockey Feder-ation (JHF) has named an 18-man Under-21 national team to represent Jamaica at the Pan American Junior Hockey Championships to be held in Trinidad and Tobago from October 17-26.
The team is slated to compete in Zone A alongside defending champions Argentina, hosts Trinidad and Tobago, the United States and Puerto Rico. Argentina have been defending champions since 1978 and, according to assistant team coach Richard Wisdom, Jamaica could create an upset this year.
"Team preparation has been excellent and the members are fit and eagerly awaiting action. We have been selected in the toughest group but we are confident that we will perform at a high level," Wisdom said.
Jamaica last participated at the championships in 2005 when they placed ninth out of 12 teams. Lorenzo Burke and Jerome Davis are returning members from that squad who are scheduled to participate in the upcoming championships.
Giovanni Gordon (Sharpe's Rebels Hockey Club), Fabian McGreggor (Jamaica College) and Orville McTaggart (Kingston College) are the other national representatives down to participate.
Completing the squad are Kimani Airey, Fabian DePass, Collin Morrison, Oraine Reid, Akeem Williams (Sharpe's Rebels Hockey Club); Duvaughn Henlon, Rushaine Walker (University of Technology); Orville Hicks, Jerome Carty (University of the West Indies); Niijon Stanford (G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport); Javier Dayes (Munro College); Kemar Mitchell (Mona High); Gerren Rowe (Explorers Hockey Club) and Charles Burton (Circus Circle Hockey Club).
Four reserves are also named to the Under-21 squad - Kymani Adams (University of Technology), Jerome Davis (JDF), Hixtroy Campbell (G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport) and Blake Roper (Wolmer's Boys').
"This will be good exposure for the players. When you look at the make up of the team most of them are from troubled communities in and around the August Town and Papine areas. Through sports we are trying to assist these young men to improve themselves," Wisdom said.
The team will depart the island on October 15 and the delegation will also include Oneal Clayton, coach, and Rudolpho Johnston, manager.
The top three teams from the championships will qualify for the Junior World Cup to be held next year in Singapore.