Monday, October 22, 2012

For me, Tappa can do no wrong!

Theodore 'Tappa' Whitmore - 'The only person born in Jamaica to ever score a goal in World Cup football' - RealTime Magazine

We are delighted that our Reggae Boyz made it to the final round after beating Antigua & Barbuda 4-1 last Tuesday as they vie for a place in the World Cup in Brazil. Even when folks were quarrelling with Theodore “Tappa” Whitmore over choices he had made in the Guatemala match-up, I could not bring myself to say a word against Jamaica's World Cup hero.  

Tappa is embraced by Ian 'Pepe' Goodison and Ricardo 'Bibi' Gardner during the Reggae Boyz triumph against Japan in the 1998 World Cup
Whenever I hear Tappa's name, all I remember is the utter joy we felt when his long legs scored those two brilliant goals against Japan in the 1998 World Cup played in France. What a match that was! And to this day, for me Tappa can do no wrong. He further endeared himself when we saw the tears in his eyes after our recent sparkling victory.

The final round for the CONCACAF teams will be tough for Jamaica as we are in the company of traditional high achievers like Mexico and a particularly talented Panama team. Then there is the very strong USA, the tough Honduras and the striving Costa Rica. That campaign, to emerge as one of the chosen three, begins in February which gives us very little time to sharpen our game.

Here is what I want the Reggae Boyz to remember: Jamaica has the fastest man and woman in the world, and they trained right here on our blessed soil. There is nothing Jamaicans cannot do if we make up our minds. We have made it to the World Cup before and we can do it again. We know how Jamaicans love their Christmas, but our Reggae Boyz can't get too carried away this time. February is just around the corner. Be brave, Reggae Boyz, we are with you!

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