CARIBBEAN QUALIFIERS

St. Kitts’ Malique Roberts (left) jostles Barbados’ Thierry Gale for the ball in their friendly encounter.
Photo by George Alleyne

Haiti thrashed Barbados 4-0 and the Dominican Republic beat St. Kitts and Nevis 2-0 Sunday to qualify for the only two Caribbean Zone places in the 2020 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship.

This is the third appearance for Haiti and a first for the Dominican Republic in this championship round of eight teams for the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) out of which the two top teams will go on to the 2020 Japan Summer Olympics.

The other six teams, in this U-23 age-restricted, competition joining the two Caribbean sides in the championship to be played during March next year in Guadalajara, Mexico, are Canada, Mexico, United States, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Honduras.

Both Barbados and St. Kitts had good runs of victories until their losing encounters last Sunday.

In previous encounters of the rounds of qualifiers, Barbados beat Cuba 1-0, then went on to spank the US Virgin Islands 5-0.

At the same time St. Kitts and Nevis beat Dominica 4-0, and created an upset by drawing 1-1 with the mighty Jamaicans.

The defeated teams were eliminated. Jamaica was knocked out because it had also drawn 1-1 with Dominica and registered no wins in that group.

Other teams that were eliminated in the Caribbean Zone are Dominica, Grenada, Cayman Islands, Puerto Rico, St Lucia, and Antigua and Barbuda.

Guyana, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago withdrew from the competition.

In spite of Barbados’ good run, the Bajan Tridents had a warning that all was not well with their team defences when in a friendly encounter with St. Kitts and Nevis on Sept. 15, they went under 0-3.

St. Kitts and Nevis’ easy run over Barbados in that friendly match, also did not prepare them for the strength of the Dominican Republic.

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