Gordon pleased with first session in Dom Rep
SANJAY MYERS with Reggae Girlz @ the CFU world qualifiers in the Dominican Republic
SAN CRISTOBAL, Dominican Republic — The Jamaica senior women's team, who arrived here on Monday for the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) qualifiers, held their first practice session at the Estadio Panamericano yesterday.
The head coach Merron Gordon was pleased with what he saw in a lively though short, 60-minute workout.
"It was a positive look and we really wanted to get the girls sharp before the first game. We worked on pressing [when not in possession] and transition out of pressing and the girls reacted well," he told the Jamaica Observer.
The Jamaicans face Group 5 opponents St Lucia on Friday before clashing with the hosts Dominican Republic two days later.
Only the top team in the group is assured of a place in the CFU Women's Cup Finals to be held in Trinidad & Tobago in August.
"The girls are ready, but I think they are a bit anxious. They want to go out and play and we have to wait until June 20 to start, so we (the coaches) are just keeping them focused," Gordon added.
Haiti, Antigua & Barbuda, Bermuda and Martinique have already progressed from their respective groups.
Ultimately, teams are seeking qualification to the 2015 Senior Women's World Cup set for Canada.
Meanwhile, the Jamaica management staff and players suffered a moment of confusion yesterday after information reached them that their opening encounter had been pushed forward by two days.
A schedule, said to be handed out by the local governing body here, had the Reggae Girlz meeting St Lucia today at 4:00 pm, instead of on Friday, as per the original fixtures.
After deliberation between the Jamaican staff and officials from regional governing body CONCACAF and CFU, the attempt to make the change was overruled.
"CFU sent out fixtures to all the countries, but for some reason Dominican Republic got it and reset it. But CFU wasn't having it so it's the original fixture that will be used," Gordon explained.
Meanwhile, the Jamaican contingent here has been taking necessary steps to avoid mosquito bites, particularly from the aedes aegypti, the carrier of the chikungunya virus.
Mosquito repellants and the wearing of long-sleeved shirts and full-length pants are the order of the day.
Anguilla were the fourth team in Group 5, but they pulled out of the competition virtually at the last minute due to some cases of the virus amongst squad members.