St Kitts lose out in most unfortunate circumstances
St Kitts & Nevis (Red)
Jevon Francis 83 mins (Pen)
Gregory Gendrey 12 mins
Jean Luc Lambourde 87 mins
Friday, October 22ND 2010 – Grenada National Stadium, Grenada: Guadeloupe opened Group E with a hard fought win over luckless St Kitts and Nevis in the opening game of Stage 2 of the Digicel Cup.
Guadeloupe started brightly and, while the hot sun shone down for this early kick off, they obviously wanted to expend their energy and get some early dividends. After Valerius had brought the best out of Byron in the Kitts goal early on with a strong hand to turn over a scorching shot from 18 yards, the Kittitian keeper was beaten on 12 minutes when Gendrey met a beautiful pass across the box from skipper Auvray to give Byron no chance as his right footed shot nestled into the bottom right corner of the St Kitts & Nevis net.
St. Kitts settled more after conceding and took the game to the French side with Isaac and Lake both going close but were both denied by fine goalkeeping from Bus. The latter seeing his looping header finger tipped around the post brilliantly by the big French shot stopper.
On 26 minutes Guadeloupe were reduced to ten men after ref Trevor Taylor sent Clavier for an early shower after his rash two footed challenge on Williams gave the Barbados official little choice but to pull a straight red from his back pocket. With numerical advantage on their side, George Isaac really started to find more room in the middle and was linking well with both Lake and Francis who simply could not find a way past Bus.
Williams came closest to leveling the games with a long range shot that dipped and swerved and which the French keeper struggled to hold but was glad to see it bounce on the line and back to his waiting arms.
The second half began as the first ended with St Kitts in the ascendancy. Isaac should have leveled things when on 49 minutes the little magician wiggled into the box and down the left side only to see his shot roll harmlessly across goal and the wrong side of the right hand post.
O’Loughlin was next up to bring the best from Bus when his long range effort was pushed past the post by the keeper at full stretch. From the resulting corner swung in by Isaac, full back O’Loughlin leapt like a salmon only to see his firm header rebound back off the post with Bus finally beaten but not his goal post.
The pressure finally told on 83 minutes when Lake was fouled from behind and Francis finally put the ball past Bus from the 12 yard spot to level the game at 1-1.
As if orchestrated from the start, Guadeloupe then came rushing out for the final 6 minutes and went in search of the winner after keeping St Kitts at bay for the past 70 minutes of play. A long ball from the back caught the St Kitts defence flat and asleep and when keeper Byron used his hand to block Collet’s attempted lob 28 yards from his own goal, referee Taylor had little option but to brandish a straight red for the second time in this match and bring both teams down to ten men.
With all three subs having been used up left back Isaac had to don the keepers shirt and hope to keep a “clean sheet” for the last 4 minutes of the game. But, as fate would have it, his first action was to pick the ball out of the net after Jean Luc Lambourde blasted the resulting free kick from the sending off into the bottom left corner of the net.
Guadeloupe may thank their coach for some shrewd tactical substitutions but mostly their stalwart keeper and man of the match Yohan Bus for the 3 points and a great start to Group E of the Digicel Cup
For more information, access to match images and live score updates, visit www.digicelfootball.com.
St Kitts & Nevis: 1 Akil Byron 3. Shashi Isaac 4 Kareem Mitchum 7 George Isaac (12. Austin Lewis 76 mins) 8 Alexis Saddler 9 Jevon Francis 10 Ian Lake 17 Gerard Williams (6. Orlando Mitchum 58 mins) 13 Thrizen Leader 14 Tiran Hanley (5. Tishan Hanley 70 mins) 15 Errol O’Loughlin
Coach: Kendale Mercury
Guadeloupe: 1.Yohan Bus 3 Mathias Babel 13 Lean Luc Lambourde 5 Eddy Viator 6 Mathieu Bemba 7 Larry Clavier 8 Stephane Auvary 10 Gregory Gendrey (20. Dmitri Fautrai 85mins) 17 Larry Hanany (11. Cedric Collet 55 mins) 18 Vidian Valerius ( Kevin Lacroix 55 mins) 21 Julian Ictoi
Coach: Donovan Duckie
Referee: Trevor Taylor (Barbados)
Assistant Referee 1: Adrian Goddard (Barbados)
Assistant Referee 2: Mark Moses (Barbados)
Match Commissioner: Jason Sylvester (Trinidad and Tobago)