TFA President Describes West Indian Football And —

Date Published: 
1947-02-18
Source: 
Jamaica Gleaner
Page: 
12

Invites Jamaican Side To Trinidad

Leaving Jamaica today after watching three of the matches, including the first two "Tests" of the current Intercolonial Football Tournament, Commander Charles Hayward, M.B.E., President of the Trinidad Amateur Football Association (sponsors of the visit of the Trinidad team now in Jamaica), has given the "Gleaner" his views on the matches he has seen and football in general in the West Indies.

As Consul in many countries, Trinidad's football head has done a great deal of travelling around the Caribbean and is quite competent to discuss the game as played in general in these parts.

But above everything is the interesting fact that he has extended an invitation to Jamaica to send a football team to Trinidad in the very near future. It was whilst he was in Jamaica last June that the Commander and Mr. G. M. daCosta met and arranged for the current visit of Trinidad.

FRIENDLY RIVALRY

"At your request I am giving you some of my impressions of Football and sport in general in the Caribbean, and in particular as it affects Jamaica, which like Trinidad, Barbados and British Guiana gives all SPORT its important position in the scheme of things, affecting as it does the whole life of sport loving peoples of the British West Indies.

"Perhaps the first thing I should comment on is the present Tour of the Trinidad Amateur Football Association Soccer team to meet in friendly rivalry the flower of the Jamaica Football Association in this really beautiful sister Island of our own Trinidad.

"The spontaneous friendly reception accorded to our boys, and many subsequent personal kindness shown right from the start made them feel at home, and whatever the outcome of the Tests our Jamaican friends may be sure that one and all of the Trinidadians will carry back with them most pleasant recollections and happy memories of Jamaica, and the sincere and sporting spirit of your boys.

"As regards the First Test, I was agreeably surprised at the high standard of football delivered by both sides and any other result but a DRAW would have been sheer bad luck for the loser. What more could one wish for than the conditions last Wednesday? A perfect day—A wonderful crowd—Good class football, and sporting at that, show by both sides—and last but by no means least excellent refereeing, which, with efficient linesmen co-ordinating, left nothing to be desired. Then a deservedly popular result.

"My friends of the Press and the various Sports writers, have dealt very fully with the various individual players on each side so well that I will not attempt to add anything on that score.

FIVE MINUTES SHORT!

"Now for the second Test Match—a keenly contested and exciting match to witness, again on a perfect day and before a mammoth crowd, with the result 2-1 in favour of Jamaica. I am sure it is a long time since anyone witnessed such a scene, as when that mammoth crowd surged over the playing field like a tidal wave, and I say tidal wave, because that is to my mind the best description.

"It was most unfortunate from everyone's point of view—Jamaica sportsmen, as well as the visitors that approximately 5 minutes short time was played in the second half. There is not the slightest doubt about that, as the time was checked by at least twenty quite independent Jamaicans, including a number of responsible officials. I suggest that those last five minutes might have made a very big difference between defeat and a DRAW for the visitors, and again it might have made no difference at all. These remarks of mine do not detract from the wonderfully good game played by the Jamaican side, no one can rob them of praise for their splendid game.

"I am very sorry to say that important affairs require me to fly to Cuba tomorrow.

"I was sorry that the Silver Challenge Shield which I presented to the Jamaica Football Association and which should have been here some weeks ago was delayed, and has only now turned up. Secretary Walker hopes however to have it opened up and on display.

QUESTION OF COACH

"It may be of interest to you readers to know that the T.A.F.A. have secured the services of a first class Coach on a three year Contract with the expert assistance of Mr. Stanley Rous, the Secretary of the FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION of England.

"The main, and in fact the whole purpose is to improve the standard of Amateur Football, and the feeling of my Council has all along been that to make an efficient job of this we must go to the source and send our Coaches to train and develop the inherent but dormant talents which exist in the youngsters in the Colleges, Secondary and even Elementary Schools.

"We want to teach them three main things: Discipline, Sportsmanship, and Football, and with the promises of support we have received from the Principals and Heads of the Colleges and Schools of all Denominations we just know we are headed for success there. The resultant footballers will I am sure be a credit to their clubs and their Island, and their physical fitness should be of a very high standard.

THE OTHER COUNTRIES

"During the last few months I have been the guest of the President and Officials of the various Federations and Associations in Mexico—Guatemala—Salvador—Costa Rica—Colombia—Venezuela—Curacao N.W.I.—Paramariba N.G., where Soccer is almost as popular as in the British Isles.

"Whilst there is of course a good deal of Professionalism in some of their Clubs, the majority of the players are Amateurs, and there are no restrictions at all regarding the playing together of Amateur and Professional players, either mixed together or Amateur vs Professional sides.

"The football one sees in these countries (all British trained) is really of a very high standard, and in almost every instance they adopt the short passing game, and they are experts in trapping, and have an uncanny knowledge as to the exact position, or so it appears, of every player on their side. Again their 'heading' is extremely good and accurate, and it is a pleasure to watch most of their games.

"With the exception of MEXICO where they play night matches, the only day on which Matches are played is Sunday, so that a touring or visiting side would require to remain over 5 weeks in order to play a Test series of 5—with the disadvantage of no representative Club matches during the weekdays, even Saturday.