HOLMWOOD Technical's sensational comeback victory over Edwin Allen on the final day of the ISSA GraceKennedy Boys' and Girls' Athletics Championships might come as a surprise for the pundits, but not so for head coach Maurice Wilson, who said he never doubted his team's ability to erase a
"I felt that once they were leading us by less than 60, we had a chance going into the final day because we have always been a final-day performing team," Wilson told the Jamaica Observer yesterday.
"I had predicted that it would be a 320-something Champs and any team that reaches 320 would win. So once I saw the score started to come down, I knew we were going to do it," he admitted.
Wilson saw his team claw their way to the title by slowly reducing Edwin Allen's massive lead on the final day to secure a five-point victory, scoring 310.5 points to Edwin Allen's 305.5.
It was Holmwood's 10th title in 11 years, having first won in 2003 with Wilson at the helm, and although his team was predicted to finish 81 points adrift of Edwin Allen, Wilson was very confident of lifting yet another title.
"I have never paid the pundits no mind because I am not a gambler. We have continued to defy the pundits...we have always done it. If you check the Champs previews, a lot of times they predict us to lose and we won. I have never paid it any attention, never," he reiterated.
"It's a championship and once you plan for a championship and you understand the sporting world, you know anything is possible," he added.
But when quizzed as to how sweet is this victory in a tournament billed the "best ever", Wilson was not sure. "It is difficult to say, now it feels a little bit sweeter because it is more current. But the first one would have been a great feeling," he said.
"This one was great for a number of reasons. I think, basically, last year was a very tough year and we don't make excuses so we had to give the former champions credit. But I also felt that last year we
had the team to do it,"
With just a five-point difference between the two-top schools and while his opposing coach Michael Dyke thought had it not been for injuries he would have won, Wilson is not buying that argument.
"All of this is a part of Championships. You have to take all these things into consideration. I think we had the best Class Four girl and she ran in the heats and we didn't like how she looked because she is suffering from a growth problem and we decided not to run her," Wilson explained.
"I do think it is fair to comment on those things in a championship because it is about preparation and last year when Chris Ann Gordon suffered cramps, I could say that and I knew it took a toll on the team so early in the competition, but I did not take away Edwin Allen's victory. In all championships, all of these things must be taken into consideration," he reiterated.
With approximately 30 records being broken over the five-day championships, which have led to the conclusion that the 2013 edition was the most outstanding, Wilson thinks it will get better still.
"Well, a couple of years ago they said it was the greatest Champs ever. But once we continue to produce the coaches we are producing and continue to produce the athletes that they are producing, the competition is only going to get better because more schools are taking greater interest in programmes and I have to give GC Foster credit. They are certifying the track and field coaches," said Wilson as he basked in the glory of a remarkable victory.