They then turned on the skill, with Christopher Randall, Kwesi Watts and Morrison putting their respective skill set on open display, as the half ended in a 0-0 scoreline with little effort from the highly-rated Cornwall College unit. Then in the 61st, Watts won a penalty, after he was pulled down while on the attack for the referee to point to the spot. Up stepped the big defender Cummings to fire home for the lead, leaving the Cornwall team dejected. They would respond with a series of raids with only the goals being the missing component, as Lennon will meet a familiar foe in Friday’s title match, which is promising to be a real humdinger in waiting. “It is a very good feeling; I think we deserve the win. We came into the match not worried about our opponents, who are a quality bunch, but we played like how we planned and that’s all that matters in giving us this important victory. Now it’s onto meeting STETHS,” stated Gordon. Western Bureau Lennon’s head coach, Merron Gordon said his team showed class and a strong determination to reach the final of the 2016 ISSA/FLOW Ben Francis Cup Knockout competition, after tagging Cornwall College 1-0 in their semi-final clash in Santa Cruz yesterday. They will now meet the defending champions St. Elizabeth Technical in Friday’s final to be played at the Manchester High School field. Fitzroy Cummings, the Lennon captain fired home the lone goal of a rather dull contest from the penalty spot in the 61st minute, after he was brought down inside the area by Cornwall College’s Dwayne Harding. “I told my players to enjoy the match, and you saw that in this match. We were bouncing about with our passes, while keeping Cornwall’s danger players in check. Tactically, it was a great match for us to make the final from,” said Gordon. Cornwall College, it seemed, were still suffering from last Saturday’s loss in the final of the Flow Super Cup, and their coach Dr. Dean Weatherly put it all down to fatigue, as a result of the long travels in recent days. “We weren’t pouncing today. We lacked the punch you normally see from us,” said Dr. Weatherly, “I think it has to do with the travelling, which took a lot out of our players against a team like Lennon.” Fatigue, or not, Lennon never gave them any real look at goal, except late in the second half, when their goalkeeper Tyrone Mullings was twice forced into superb saves to keep his team in front, both off corner kicks from Jourdaine Fletcher. His strike partner Peter-Lee Vassell had little to no impact on the game and that in fact summed up their afternoon, as the two are arguably the best front two in schoolboy football. Ryan Morrison should have scored for Lennon in the 20th minute, when the Cornwall goalkeeper Jamario Hines let the ball slip from his grasp, but the follow-up effort slid wide of the goal. LITTLE EFFORT
Amidst concerns being expressed over procurement of four aircraft, the types of which are no longer manufactured, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon has again sought to defend the $697 million purchases.Since Government announced its intention to buy two Islander and two Skyvan reconditioned aircraft, which are no longer being manufactured, questions have been raised on various issues, including maintenance and sourcing of parts. The Islanders will be purchased from a company in neighbouring Brazil, while the Skyvans, from Belgium, are owned by a United States-based company.State Minister Joseph Harmon has explained that a team from the Guyana Defence Force GDF) has inspected the planes to be procured from a company inA Skyvan already in the GDF’s fleetBrazil, and has submitted positive reports on the condition of these craft.“I can also say to you that the aircraft…were inspected, and that the team of inspectors sent back a very positive [preliminary] report about the condition of (the) aircraft, and they believe that we have a very good buy…and I have every confidence in the quality of personnel that actually inspected these aircraft and recommend them for purchase by us in Guyana,” he stated.According to the State Minister, Guyana, like many countries around the world, already has operating similar aircraft which were manufactured sometime around 1977.“These were aircraft that people don’t sell them when they have them… What I can say to you is that these are tried and tested aircraft all around the world. In fact, here in Guyana, there is a large fleet of that type of aircraft, and when people have them, they don’t sell them,” he said.Asked about the lifespan of these aircraft, Minister Harmon pointed out, “These engines can be changed, they can be upgraded and all of that; so there’s no single statement that says, ‘This aircraft will run for five years, 10 years…’ Once the airframe is solid — and I can say to you the airframe is very solid — all of the other parts can be changed as you go along. So you’ll have good lifespan off these aircraft.”Earlier this month, the National Assembly approved $484,239,000 for the GDF to make final payments for the four aircraft. The army had already identified some $213,885,000 from its 2018 capital programme to make initial payments.Harmon, who also sits on the Defence Board, told the House’s Committee of Supply the foregoing in answer to questions from Opposition Parliamentarian and former Home Affairs Minister Clement Rohee.Opposition Chief Whip Gail Teixeira had asked whether Government had considered procuring Twin Otter aircraft instead. In response, the State Minister explained that while the Twin Otters are as good as Islanders, the latter are more versatile, and spares are easier to source.He had noted, too, that the GDF is better equipped to deal with these types of aircraft, while adding that the price was also a deciding factor, since a Twin Otter costs somewhere between US$2.4 million and US$4 million for a used one, and a new one is being sold at US$7 million.The two Islanders will be used to ferry passenger and cargo, while the two Skyvans will be used for paratrooping and “troop-carrying purposes”.