Netball

Top teams battle for all-island supremacy in Champions League netball

Sunday, June 18, 2017

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Key shooters Elaine Davis of Jamalco and UTech Knights's Shanice Beckford are embracing the challenge of leading their Major League teams to honours, when the top teams battle for all-island supremacy in Netball Jamaica's historic Champions League.

The championship, to be played at G C Foster College of Physical Education and Sport, is a culmination of competitions that were played all over the island, beginning with the JN Bank Parish Minor, Intermediate and Major Leagues.

Top teams from the varying divisions advanced to the first-time Middlesex, Cornwall, and Surrey County leagues, where all the finalists earned spots in this tournament.

Matches not only pit the best of the best, but will also be a battle of the fittest as each game will last only 20 minutes, thus getting off to a fast start will be key.

Major League contenders will play in one group on a round robin basis, with the team tallying the most points declared champions of the competition, in which the first centre pass is set for 12:00 pm.

Action will also take place in the intermediate and minor leagues, where teams have been split in two zones and the winners are set to play in finals for the Champions League crown, beginning at 5:00 pm.

Jamalco and UTech, with a host of national and past national players, have been most impressive in the major league while playing unbeaten this season and, based on this form and quality, one of the two should lift the Champions League title.

Beckford, whose UTech team has won the intercollegiate, St Andrew, and Surrey Major League titles, owned up to her role.

“I've to be on point and I've to be ready for the game, because I think my attacking end feeds off me because I'm the shooter,” she said.

Davis, at 40, is shooting impeccably and, having led Jamalco to top honours in Clarendon and the Middlesex Major League titles, noted the chief contributing factor to her effort.

“When you've years of experience it kind of works, and when you've that kind of skills support that I have in the team, then it works,” said Davis.

Another to look at is host team G C Foster, who have several national representatives in Adean Thomas, Zonasha Hinds and Stacian Facey, who will give them an outside chance.

If there exists a tie after preliminary play in the major league, there will be a play-off to decide the champions.

For the minor and intermediate teams, the two zone winners will clash to decide the first Champions League title holder.

Ken's Wildflower (Middlesex), Global 'B' (Surrey) and Angelets (Cornwall) won the Supreme Ventures Minor League titles a fortnight ago at Montego Bay Boys and Girls Club in St James.

In the Sunshine Cereals Intermediate League, Montego Bay Boys and Girls Club (Cornwall), Friendship (Middlesex) and Global 'A' (Surrey) emerged champions at the Leila Robinson Courts in Kingston last Sunday, while UTech Knights (Surrey), Jamalco (Middlesex) and Westlanders (Cornwall) won the Supreme Ventures Major League.

Today's fixtures

12:00 pm Global vs Molynes 'C', Stingrays vs Hayes 'A'

12:20 pm MoBay Boys and Girls Club vs Friendship, G C Foster vs Westlanders

12:40 pm Molynes 'A' vs Blue Eagles, Jobs Lane 'A' vs Angelets

1:00 pm Tantrum vs Vlazers, Westlanders vs Jamalco

1:20 pm August Town vs Global 'A', Excelsior Eagles vs MoBay Boys and Girls Club

1:40 pm Blazers vs Ken's Wildflower, Westlanders vs Molynes 'A'

2:00 pm Blue Eagles vs Jamalco, Molynes 'C' vs Angelets

2:20 pm Ken's Wildflower vs Tantrum, G C Foster vs Blue Eagles

2:40 pm Jamalco vs Molynes 'A', Global 'B' vs Angelets

3:00 pm Ken's Wildflower vs Tantrum, Molynes 'A' vs G C Foster

3:20 pm Stingrays vs August Town, Jobs Lane vs Global 'B'

3:40 pm Blue Eagles vs Westlanders, Global 'A' vs Hayes 'A'

4:00 pm Friendship vs Excelsior Eagles, Jamalco vs G C Foster

4:20 pm August Town vs Hayes 'A', Stingrays vs Global 'A'

5:00 pm Minor and Intermediate League finals (zone winners)

In the major league, the team with the most points will be declared the winner. In the case of a tie on points, there will be a play-off to decide the winner.

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