Trinidad and Tobago recorded their second straight victory in Group F action of the Digicel Caribbean Cup to secure their passage to the finals in Martinique next month. This came by way of a hard-fought 2 – 1 victory over Guyana at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium on Thursday night.
It was left to goals by Lester Peltier in the 34th minute and in-form striker Devorn Jorsling in the 42nd minute to secure the three points for the hosts. Guyana scored their goal in the 78th minute through substitute Sean Beveney to make it a tense finale for the hosts.
Unlike their opening victory, T&T could not pull away from their opponents as Guyana was a more disciplined and organized unit than St. Vincent and the Grenadines. In fact, Guyana almost sneaked ahead in the sixth minute when goalkeeper Jan Michael Williams dropped a corner from Dwain Jacobs but luckily for T&T, Peltier was on spot to avert danger.
Guyana looked eager to attack in the opening stages and had T&T a little nervous at the back. On 30 minutes, Williams redeemed himself and did very well to push out Walter Moore’s stinging long range effort.
The Warriors came into the match a little more and drew first blood against the Jaguars. In the 34th minute Peltier swung a deep cross from close to the right corner flag, which deceived Guyana’s goalkeeper Ronson Williams and out of what appeared a relatively innocuous situation, the Warriors had the lead. This helped to settle the home side even further and they played with more confidence.
Three minutes later, T&T almost doubled their lead when captain Clyde Leon saw his blistering effort crash off the crossbar. On 42 minutes, Jorsling would do further damage. After good work on the left by Jamal Gay, Jorsling collected, turned and fired home a low drive much to the delight of the home fans.
On the resumption of the second half, Gay should have tripled the T&T advantage, when only a minute in his shot missed the target from very close range and soon after, he shot straight at the Guyana custodian.
T&T players were keen to finish off the Jaguars but found it difficult to apply the final touch when chances presented themselves. Jorsling had a couple of further misses before Beveney punished T&T for a defensive lapse when he drove home from inside the penalty area to cause some anxious moments in the closing 10 minutes. But the Warriors held on for the crucial three points and deservedly so, on the balance of play over the 90 minutes, moving to six points in the Group.
Guyana coach Wayne Dover was extremely upset with the loss, “I’m disappointed. There are no two ways about that. I thought we did well against a very good Trinidad and Tobago team but I’m disappointed in the manner in which we lost. We could have come back in the second half but we conceded badly and we paid for it now we have to hope that Trinidad does us a favor against Haiti and we will go for the win against St. Vincent to keep our qualifying chances alive,” said Dover.
T&T’s Russell Latapy credited his players for holding on for the win, “my players came here tonight and completed a job and did what was asked of them, which was to get three points and move on to the finals in Martinique. We did just that. I was pretty pleased with the performance from all my players. Yes, there are some areas to work on and it continues to be a work in progress.
“We were up against a Guyana side that had nothing to lose and they saw it that way whether they lost 1-0, 3-0 or 4-0 it would still be a loss so they decided to go with the extra men in attack in the second half, which meant we had to be a bit tight. But all in all, I’m pleased with the win and now we will look to finish with a third victory against Haiti on Saturday,” said Latapy.
Trinidad & Tobago: 1. Jan M. Williams 2. Clyde Leon 3. Yohance Marshall 6. Daniel Cyrus 8. Trent Noel 9. Devon Jorsling 14. Jovin Jones 15. Lester Peltier 16. Julius James 17. Jamal Gay 20. Kevin Molino Coach: Russell Latapy
Guyana: 1. Ronson Williams 2. Chris Nurse 3. Howard Lowe (Capt) 4. Christopher Bourne 5. Walter Moore 6. Jake Newton 7. Dwain Jacobs 10. Anthony Abrams 11. John Rodrigues 14. Sean Cameron 18. Devon Millington Coach: Wayne Dover
Referee: Valdin Legister – Jamaica
Assistant Referee 1 – Mark Sullivan – Jamaica
Assistant Referee 2 –– Adrian Goddard – Barbados
Commissioner – Dale Spenser – Jamaica
Meanwhile, Haiti secured their first three points of the 2010 Digicel Caribbean Cup with a business line 3-1 victory over St. Vincent and the Grenadines in their Group F encounter at the Manny Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella on Thursday.
Samsung “Man of the Match” Sony Norde broke the deadlock on the stroke of half time when he collected a through pass inside the penalty box and smartly beat the goalkeeper with a low shot that curled into the far post.
Earlier, St. Vincent had the first effort on goal of the two teams when Myron Samuel saw his close range effort stopped by the Haitian goalkeeper Steward Ceus. Haiti settled soon after and had a few chances at goal themselves.
Haiti would make sure of the win on 83 minutes through Ricardo Charles. Saint Preux, who looked a very good player for Haiti, had an effort that was partially saved, which allowed Charles run in from the right to stab home the loose ball.