Former St Anthony's College footballers Kenwyne Jones and Carlos Edwards were the guest of honours yesterday as the school celebrated their annual St Anthony's Day at their Westmoorings compound.
Jones, who currently plays with Stoke City FC in the English Premiership, and Edwards, who campaigns with Ipswich Town FC in the Championship Division, visited the school, where Jones donated uniforms to the school's football team, received by captain and national youth goalkeeper Jamal Francois.
The two Trinidad and Tobago players were in return honoured with school rings and took time out to give a few words of inspiration to the entire school following mass in the gymnasium.
Longstanding coach Nigel Grosvenor, who has managed the Westmoorings "Tigers" for more than 25 years, was filled with pride at having the former players return to the school to address the students.
Grosvenor said that although the school has had a history of unearthing talented players, he was not surprised at Jones' and Edwards' successes because of their professional attitudes.
He added that the duo never missed school and described them as not only good footballers, but "good people" as well.
"I always tell my boys, winning medals is nothing," Grosvenor told the media after the function. "This is what it's all about, knowing that when they leave school, they make it. But when you have two players in 'Premiership' and you sit down and watch them every Sunday, it's a feeling you can't explain, so much pride that that is what they worked so hard for over the years. No money could replace that."
Jones was happy to "give back" to his alma mater and advised the students that to succeed, they needed to invest their effort, not just in football, but in academics as well.
"When you come in, you don't know what you're going to turn out five, six, seven years later. For me I didn't know what I would turn out to be. All I know is that when I came here I wanted to play football, of course the academic side was good too," the striker said.
He also took time out to pay tribute to Grosvenor for his contributions to the school over the years.
"We have Mr Grosvenor, who has been ever-present for over 20 years, so we have to give credit to him; because at that time most people might retire or go on to do something different with their life. It's obvious that with him it's a passion.
"He loves to coach, and he has been synonymous with this brand and this school for the longest time, and pay homage (to him) for that."