Red Sharks to bump heads with Vultures in Grand Final
Defending champions Duhaney Park Red Sharks will have their work cut out when they challenge cross town arch-rivals Vauxhall Vultures in the 8th Jamaica Rugby League Association (JRLA) National Club Championship Grand Final at Up Park Camp at 4:00 pm today.
Some exceptional clashes have featured between these teams, who are often at daggers drawn.
Historically, however, Vauxhall will start as favourites and are seeking their fifth national title from six appearances in the final.
Against the Red Sharks, Vauxhall have won four of their last seven encounters, losing two and drawing one.
That upperhand is due to Vauxhall having at their disposal the biggest and most aggressive forwards in the league, primarily the missile trio of Sandino Hastings, Jahdeek Clarke and Tiege Jackson.
Speedy centres Andrew Fong and Jackeba Grant have been uncompromising in open field, wreaking havoc with the help of veteran playmakers Carlyle Burgher and crafty full back Kemar Grey.
Winger Carlyle Burgher, who plays Major League football, is expected to kick to goal for his team.
Meanwhile, Duhaney Park, who ended the regular season at the top with six wins and a draw, will depend on their young, energetic forwards.
Midfielders Stephon Lounds, Stephen Brown and Navare Harriott, all hulking figures, will capitalise on their size in a bid to retain their title by building a platform for team attacks.
The Red Sharks playmakers Leon Thomas and Andre Reid will be tasked with moving the ball wide to set up fast-finishing Fabion Turner and Cleveland Yap.
In addition, veteran centres Jermaine Pinnock and Claude Yen should provide Duhaney Park with plenty of defensive stops and good attacking runs.
Respected referee Gary Mahfood of the Jamaica Defence Force will take charge of the game.