Coach Watson looks at the positives
For Kingston College, a programme that has set for itself a standard of excellence and silverware, a trophy-less schoolboy season could be seen as a failure.
However, for head coach Raymond Watson, in his first season on the job, he believes that his team is poised to make a big leap into 2023 as he thinks they surpassed the expectations that many had before their 2021 Manning Cup title defence began.
KC lost their hold on the Manning Cup after losing in the semi-finals to St Andrew Technical High and finished the season without silverware losing the Champions Cup final to Jamaica College.
Watson said that given what persons expected would be a difficult path to a title defence in a first-round group that included St George’s College and Calabar High, he believes that there are positives in year one of his spell at the helm.
“I am happy with the progress that we have made. Nobody expected us to be here. We contested a Manning Cup semi-final and a Champions Cup final. We started the season and people were saying that in the group of death, KC wouldn’t come out. So I am very happy for them,” Watson told The Gleaner.
What he does regret is that Dujuan ‘Whisper’ Richards, who ended the season with 30 goals in all competitions, completed his Kingston College chapter without a title. However, he says that it has been a joy to watch his journey unfold as he guarantees that there will not be a return to schoolboy football for him.
“It has been a privilege. The first time I saw Dujuan Richards playing football, he was playing centre back. That forward transition came when he played under-13 at Harbour View before coming into Kingston College. At Phoenix Academy, Craig Butler has really helped in his development,” Watson said. “It has been a great journey, and when I say Richards used to play centre half, people wouldn’t believe me.”