When 12-year-old Tamar McNally ran onto the playing field in Lluidas Vale, St Catherine, the crowd of predominantly men greeted his mere presence with loud cheers, and later clamoured for him to get his fair share of ball contacts.
He is happy with the warm reception he received on Sunday although his team, Water Mount, got a 7-1 thrashing from Friends.
McNally, who hails from Spanish Town in St Catherine, attends Jonathan Grant High.
He told THE BEACON that he developed a knack for football when he was about seven years old.
He played for Spanish Town Primary – his old school, as well as for Rivoli United’s Under 15.
McNally, who admires Brazilian star footballer Neymar, wants to eventually play the game at the professional level.
“Neymar is a very skillful footballer and so am I,” he declared.
The youngster, who donned the ‘Number 3’ jersey for Water Mount, displayed football wisdom and good ball control while he played on Sunday in the Lluidas Vale Corner League.
But he struggled physically to match up with the adult footballers – some twice his age.
McNally, nonetheless, expressed gratitude for the exposure. “Playing with the big men, I get more experience. I can manage them by just passing the ball…” he said, adding that he loves football because it is ‘a very good sport’.
McNally also said he does well academically.