Friday 22 March, 2019

KC and Clarendon College in big Olivier Shield showdown today

The 2018 Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association Olivier Shield final takes place on Saturday at 6:00 pm inside the National Stadium as Kingston College (KC) and Clarendon College face off in the final match of the senior schoolboy football season.

The Olivier Shield brings together the ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup champions and the ISSA/Wata daCosta Cup champions in a clash to decide the best schoolboy football team in the country.

The Olivier Shield was contested in a home-and-away two-leg format with the possibility of the title being shared if the scores were tied after two games. However, the format was changed by ISSA to a one-leg format following the 2013 season which meant the title could no longer be shared.

KC won the Manning Cup on November 30 to take the title as best urban area senior football team, while Clarendon College were crowned best rural area senior schoolboy team on December 1 by winning the daCosta Cup title.

Urban area schools have dominated the Olivier Shield over the last 13 years. During that period urban area schools secured 12 outright titles, except in 2006 when Bridgeport High shared with Glenmuir High. As a result, Clarendon College will be looking to break the urban area dominance and win their fourth Olivier Shield following victories in 1977, 1978 and 1998 when they shared the title with Dunoon Technical.

KC will be searching for their 10th Olivier Shield title following outright victories in 1949, 1952, 1957, 1964, 1965, 1975, and 1986. They shared the title twice, with Dinthill Technical in 1981 and Rusea's High in 1985.

KC will enter the Olivier Shield battle high on confidence as their Manning Cup title ended a very long championship drought in that competition.  They defeated North Street neighbours St George's College 3-2 in a dramatic final, at the National Stadium in Kingston, to win urban area biggest schoolboy football prize for the first time in 32 years.

The Ludlow Bernard-team had to come from behind  twice with the winning goal coming at the death.

The victory handed KC their 15th Manning Cup title, the third most successful team in the history of the competition.

Twenty-four hours after KC’s triumph, Clarendon College earned the right to meet the North Street-based school in the Olivier Shield when they turned in a big performance to beat Cornwall College 2-1 at the Montego Bay Sports Complex for their eighth daCosta Cup title.

The Lenworth Hyde-coached team prevailed despite playing with 10 men for most of the match following the ejection of goalkeeper Tafari Chambers in the 14th minute.

The day was also special for Clarendon College as the victory enabled them to finish the competition with a perfect record. It was also a special moment for Hyde, a former Clarendon College star, who became the first to win the daCosta Cup as a player and then as a coach.

Hyde won the competition as a player in 1977 under the guidance of coach Winston Chung-Fah.

Both schools take impressive records into the Olivier Shield.

KC won 15 of 18 games over the Manning Cup and the all-island Champions Cup Knockout heading into the Olivier Shield. During that period they scored 70 goals and conceded eight. On the other hand, Clarendon College won 15 of 16 games over both competitions during which they scored 65 goals and conceded five.

Both schools have only suffered a defeat, which came in the opening round of the Champions Cup. With both teams on a high an interesting Olivier Shield battle looms.

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