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Saturday 24 March 2018

Shabazz guides Guyana to 5-0 win

TRINIDAD and Tobago’s Jamal Shabazz has guided Guyana to a second round berth in the Digicel Caribbean Cup football tournament.

Playing in Group “A”, Guyana hammered hosts Netherlands Antilles 5-0 on Friday. It was their second emphatic victory in the qualification series whipping Suriname 5-0 on Wednesday.

The Guyanese footballers, under Shabazz, a former TT women’s football team coach, silenced the home fans as they took control of the match and took the lead on 31 minutes through Gregory Richardson.

He made a solo run and then held off a challenge before slotting past the advancing goalkeeper.

The Antilleans improved and went close to finding an equaliser early in the second half but they were soon punished for not converting.

Nigel Codrington turned his marker cleverly and drilled one into the far corner on 58 minutes to send Guyana up 2-0.

The homeside withered and Guyana capitalised by grabbing three further goals.

Randolph Jerome’s fine diving header, connecting firmly with Walter Moore’s corner, added to Guyana’s lead and a 3-0 margin.

Then Codrington’s second goal of the night on 73 minutes, a fine right-footed strike from the edge of the penalty area, ended the match as a contest.

Suriname applied late pressure in search of a consolation strike but found it hard against a sturdy Guyanese defence.

Abrahams’ solo goal in the final minute sealed Guyana’s victory and left Suriname with an uphill challenge to qualify for the next phase of the competition.

The second round starts in November with the eight-team finals carded for TT in January.

In another match on Friday, Suriname bounced back from a heavy defeat to Guyana earlier in the week to stop Grenada 1-0. This was also on Friday in Group “A” at the Ergilio Hato Stadium in Curacao.

The Dutch-speaking islanders started the game confidently, taking early control of the match against the lacklustre Grenadians.

It was no surprise that they grabbed the lead and the eventual winner in the 35th minute through Gorden Kinsaine.

After teammate Cliften Sandvliet went past two defenders, his shot was partially blocked by the goalkeeper but Kinsaine was on the spot to convert on the rebound.


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