Thu, Sep

National team midfield recall Kerwyn “Hardest” Jemmott says witnessing the exploits of the “Soca Warriors” at the 2006 World Cup Finals was a wake up call for him and now he’s desperate to prove that he is worthy of a spot in the national team.

The former Joe Public player, who last played for T&T in a Digicel Cup qualifier against St Vincent and the Grenadines in January 2005, has turned  out to all of the training sessions since being called last month and has vowed to put his best effort forward for the hosts as they begin the challenge on January 12 against Barbados at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.

“I’m glad to get back on the team and I am just really looking forward to grab this opportunity and make the best of it,” he told TTFF Media in a somewhat timid manner.

He added that he was disappointed to have not made Leo Beenhakker’s team during the World Cup qualifiers in 2005 but now wants to deliver for Rijsbergen.

“I still think I have what it takes to do good for the country. I didn’t stop training at all. I got an injury and then when the last coach (Leo Beenhakker) came, I was not in the squad again. Now I just want to thank the coach for giving me an opportunity and I want to show the country that I can do it at this level,” added the 28-year-old  Jemmot who has 30 appearances for T&T.

Meantime, his close friend, a neighbour at Nelson Street, Port of Spain, could likely be the captain of the team for the Digicel Cup,being the most capped player with 43 appearances. Densill Theobald also came through similar upbringing as Jemmott, playing alongside each other from the youth grade. But Theobald went on to line up against Sweden and England before a world audience. He too knows that the challenge could be an uphill one.

“It’s good that ‘Hardest’ is back in the team but he needs to realize that players don’t get chances so easily and if he is serious he has to put his head down and maintain a good amount of discipline,” the 24-year-old  Theobald said on Friday.

“I will try my best to guide him as I have done before but this time I think we both have some more experience so hopefully it will go well for both of us. Personally I realize my responsibility on this team now because there are a lot of younger players and this is a tournament in which all the countries want to win for bragging rights. I think the coach has not had the easiest of times and he is missing a few of his players but we will do our best to give him full support by doing what he request of us on the field of play,” Theobald added.

The 21-man squad will resume training under Rijsbergen at the Ato Boldon Stadium on Saturday afternoon.