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Micey: ‘Players can play but lack concentration’

Micey: ‘Players can play but lack concentration’

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He is 72 years old and the oldest active footballer in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Rudolph ‘Micey’ Sutherland may not have the mobility of fifty years ago, but has the commitment to still play the odd match for the Over 35 club, holding firm to the club’s motto: “Never too old to play”.

Sutherland turns out every Sunday morning to do his weekly routine of playing a game of football with members of that organisation. For him that’s what keeps him fit and alert.{{more}}

A former national footballer, Sutherland has played for several local clubs, including Falcons, Juniors, Black Hawks, Spurs and the famed Notre Dames.

Playing in the midfield and as a striker then, Sutherland represented St. Vincent and the Grenadines in the Popham Cup played among the four Windward Islands from 1960- 62. He then left these shores and worked for eighteen years on the National Bulk Carriers from 1967 to 1985.

An ardent follower of modern day football, Sutherland believed that players of his time were “better” than the present crop.

“The players now can play, but they lack concentration, they are not using their heads, they are not thinking while on the field”, Sutherland observed.

“Today footballers have a lot of opportunities for contracts and so on, but are not making use of them”, he said.

Opportunities which he believes if they were available in his time would have been optimised.

Of the current players on the national team, Sutherland singles out goalkeeper Melvin Andrews and Cornelius Huggins, the most skillful defender in the region, who are any close matches for players of yesteryear.

In Sutherland’s opinion, “They are not good enough to make any of the national teams in my time”.

Sutherland’s best St. Vincent and the Grenadines starting XI reads, Mike Findlay (goalkeeper), Alwyn “Dum-Dum” Jones, Winston “Sir Bats” Baptiste, Lawrence “Babs” Jones and Douglas Cambridge- defenders. He has Fred Trimmingham, Rudy Boucher and Elliot “Morie” Millington (midfielders) with Dougie Doyle, Norbert Hall and Norman “Zupang” Jones as the three strikers, in Sutherland’s 4-4-3 selection.

He rates Findlay as the best goalkeeper he has ever seen.

Also a former national sprinter in his hey day, Sutherland recalled representing this country at Northern Games and Southern Games In Trinidad and Tobago, Easter Games in Grenada and the West Indian Championships.

The father of twelve; six boys and six girls, Sutherland was part of a history making moment in 1999 in a first division match between Pepsi Sion Hill and Over 35’s in the Sion Hill football league.

On that occasion , two of his sons and two grandsons were in Sion Hill line up, while he was part of the Over 35’s team.

But only one of his grandsons has followed his footsteps. Cauldric Sutherland represented St. Vincent and the Grenadines at the Under-17 level in 1998 and went to play for the national Under-20 team two years later. He was part of this country’s training squad that toured England in December 2003.

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