Tuesday 23 July, 2019

3-way relegation, quarter-final battle in Magnum JN KSAFA Super League

Rarely does it ever happen like this, where three teams are battling to save relegation in their final preliminary match of a league campaign; and at the same time, any of the three can still grab a spot in the quarter-finals.

This is the scenario facing Santos FC, Rockfort FC and Mountain View FC, who will all be engaged in crucial final round clashes set to begin at the same time, in Zone B of the Magnum JN KSAFA Super League football competition on Saturday.

All three teams have eight points heading into the fixtures, which matches Santos against Brown’s Town at Harbour View Mini Stadium, while Mountain View will tackle Rockfort at Barbican playing field. Both matches are set to kick off simultaneously, at 3:30 p.m.

For much of the campaign, Santos have been languishing at the bottom of the standings, but following an unexpected 2-0 win over Rockfort last weekend, they are now above fellow lowly-placed rivals Rockfort and Mountain View.

In fact, they are ahead of the other teams on the basis of goal difference, with a -2 deficit that compares satisfactorily against Rockfort (-5) and Mountain View FC (-9).

“Last year it was the same thing, our back was against the wall. I came back here and I said to them ‘we have two games and we must get the points we need to stay up’,” said coach Carlton ‘Spanner’ Dennis following the victory last week.

Now they will be looking to complete the great getaway against second-place Brown’s Town, who are fighting another battle, to win group honours.

Sherton McPherton has been one of Santos’ leading offensive players and scored last week, along with Calvin Jarrett. Then they laid down some real stout-hearted defending and will be looking once again to keep a clean sheet while getting their name on the scoresheet.

Brown’s Town are on 19 points, two adrift of leaders Central Kingston, who will face Boys’ Town (13 points) in the last group match, on Sunday.

They have been consistent all season and after turning back Boys’ Town 2-1 last weekend, Brown’s Town will be looking for goals from regular scorers Ryan and Ramone Lewis to aid their winning hopes, which could land them a quarter-final matchup against the fourth-place team from Zone A. That, however, depends on Central Kingston losing.

Either way, Brown’s Town and Central Kingston are in a good place, much unlike Rockfort and Mountain View, who are resting uncomfortably with full knowledge that a loss will dump them to the lower league next season.

Mountain View are actually worse off and must win to be certain of staying up. This is not to say they cannot avoid the drop with a draw, but they would not be banking on a Santos loss to save their skin when they can do it themselves.

The same holds for Rockfort, who will be certain of staying up with a tie.

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