By Carlena Knight
Hard work and concentration are the two key factors that General Secretary of front-runners Cool and Smooth Global Bank of Commerce AC Delco Greenbay Hoppers, Troy Gibson believes will be needed for the west side team to secure their third Antigua Premier League (APL) title.
Gibson was speaking on the Good Morning JoJo Sports Show on Monday when he made the comment.
“Hard work and concentration, because I think that right now everyone is working hard for everyone and I don’t want anyone to get carried away or begin to get comfortable for being so high in the table. If we continue to show that kind of hard work and determination that we are putting in, especially from our young players –we have a lot of players who are under 25 and I see them really working hard and I want them to continue to do that — we can achieve anything at the end of the season,” Gibson said.
Hoppers presently sit at the top of the 10-team table with 19 points edging out Sandals INET Grenades by a better number in goals scored — 22 to their 18.
The top team edged out Fitzroy’s Rewinding Pigotts Bullets on Sunday afternoon by a 2-1 margin with goals from Javorn Stevens (51st) and Antyon Henry (87th).
Shamoi Andrew scored the lone goal for Bullets. They are 3rd with 13 points.
Head coach of Grenades, Derrick “Pretty Boy” Edwards, however, believes that in order for his team to be named champions that his team needs be more consistent.
“Consistency. I think that we took our foot off the pedal a bit and I think it cost us but at the end of the day it is my job to keep the players focused and in good health and have them ready for each game every weekend,” Edwards said.
Grenades, in their latest match, defeated All Saints United 3-1 over the weekend at the Antigua Recreation Grounds.
An own goal by Jeshawn Challenger and goals from Antonio Joseph (62nd) and Stefan Smith (63rd) would give the round south team the win.
United’s Bernardo Milford got one back for the country team. They are now 7th with 11 points.
Edwards lamented on his team’s performance.
“It was a terrible first half for us. I think we have to give the young guys from All Saints credit; I think Schyan [Jeffers] is doing a wonderful job with them. It’s just experience that cost them. I think that my team was over confident and that in the second half they played much better.
“When we got into the locker room and we got to sit, I think they realised, you know, game on so they had to go out and play the second half and I think they stood to the task in the second half.”
In the other match that day, Rawdon and Associates Parham and Medical Specialists Ottos Rangers played to a one-all draw.
Rickel Charles drew first blood for Parham in the 14th minute, while Junior Benjamin equalised for Rangers in the 48th minute. The APL will go on a break this weekend to facilitate the One Nation Concert and resume on January 18th.