Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones was given the all-clear to join the National Team in training on Sunday evening and now looks definite to appear in Sunday’s friendly international against England.
Jones, who suffered a blow to wrist earlier this month, showed up at the Larry Gomes Stadium on Saturday but observed the first training session from the sidelines as he wore a brace on the injured hand. Now though, he’s slowly restarted physical activity a week ahead of the match.
“It feels good to be back out with the rest of the team,” Jones told TTFF Media. “We have known about this game and how massive it is so I think every player would like to be involved. Hopefully I can continue to work with the rest of the guys and run out there next Sunday for the game itself. We’ll take our time with everything but definitely I hope to be involved.”
The TTFF Medical staff will continue to monitor Jones.
View Saturday's Team Training Session
View Dennis Lawrence Interview
T&T head coach Francisco Maturana said he was clearly hoping to prepare his best team possible and expects England to do the same.
“We have our selection of players and we are working with that. The first session was a good one to get the preparations going. It’s a big occasion coming up… not just the England game but also Jamaica and Bermuda. We had to send the message early to the players,” Maturana said
“We have some very young players in the team but it’s also good to have the experienced ones in there. We are going to put out our best. There is a lot of history in this game (against England). They have a very deep pool of players and I expect them to be a strong test.”
Swansea City defender Dennis Lawrence, back out for the encounter, said he still has some finalizing to do regarding his participation in the World Cup qualifiers.
“It was good a feeling to be back training among the boys. They seem a good bunch eager to learn and work hard. We have to make sure we prepare well for the game and that’s what we are trying to ensure now,” Lawrence added.
“The word friendly doesn’t mean anything when it comes to international football anymore. England is one of the world’s powerhouses when it comes to football and obviously it’s a great opportunity to compete and prove ourselves against the best. It’s a massive occasion not just for the players but also for Trinidad and Tobago football and we have to make sure that we are prepared mentally and physically. We will love to go in and come out with a positive result.
“The decision (to come out of retirement for competitive international football) is something I’m still in discussions with the management over. I still have the country’s interest at heart and I will like the challenge. Hopefully we can also get a positive answer on that one as well.”
Sunderland midfielder Carlos Edwards is also carded to join the preparations along with Puerto Rico Islanders defender Osei Telesford. Some of the other players involved already include Stern John, Darryl Roberts, Clayton Ince, Jan Michael Williams, Kevaughn Connell, Aurtis Whitley, Jerol Forbes, Atulla Guerra, Keyeno Thomas, Makan Hislop and Marvin Phillip among the rest of the squad. (May 25, 2008)