Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz steal T&T’s thunder in 3-1 friendly win

August 12th, 2010

RUDOLPH AUSTIN... scored Jamaica’s second goal from penalty spot

Port of Spain, Trinidad — Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz returned to winning ways on the international scene following their decent 3-1 victory over Caribbean neighbours and arch-rivals Trinidad and Tobago here at the Marvin Lee Stadium last evening.

Dane Richards put the visitors ahead after only eight minutes before Devon Jorsling pulled the teams level on minute 29.

The home team’s respite was short-lived, however, as Rodolph Austin put the Boyz back in front a minute later from the penalty spot before Kavin Bryan sealed the convincing victory eight minutes into the second half.

And although the Reggae Boyz had to play a man short after Austin was red-carded 10 minutes from time, the Boyz had little difficulty holding the homesters at bay, even after six minutes of time added.

It was the first victory for the Reggae Boyz over the Caribbean’s number one ranked team, following three consecutive drawn results. The teams will do it again in the return leg at Kingston’s National Stadium on October 10.

Despite kicking off more than 15 minutes after the advertised start time, Jamaica looked at home and established dominance immediately, earning two corner kicks in as many minutes, the second presenting Shavar Thomas with a glorious chance at the back post, but the Kansas City Wizards defender could only head high over the top, though unchallenged.

In a massively pro Trinidad crowd, Jamaica’s head coach Theodore Whitmore would have wanted an early goal to settle his team’s nerves, and they did just that when New York Red Bulls’ Richards raced onto a loose ball on the edge of the penalty area and drove it fiercely into the goal, after the Trinidad and Tobago defence failed to clear an Austin diagonal pass from the right side.

Richards’ speed was posing problems on the right side and surprisingly, Ryan Johnson was proving far too tricky for Trinidad’s right-back Makan Hislop, which created openings for the visitors.

Richards could have registered a first-half hat-trick, but he proved profligate, skying a sitter from six yards centre of the goal after Johnson had abused Hislop on the left and teed him up.

He also shot wide from just inside the penalty area after the red-and-black-clad defenders encountered difficulties clearing their lines.

Just before the half-hour mark, the home team pulled level when Jorsling, a decent forward who has the ability to hold up the ball and bring his midfielders into play, bundled home a left-sided crow from Keon Daniel.

Jamaica hit back quickly and decisively when Bryan turned his marker inside the penalty area from a left-sided throw in and Carlyle Mitchell pulled him down. Barbadian referee Trevor Taylor had no hesitation pointing to the spot and Austin placed the ball perfectly on the ground to beat the diving Jan Michael Williams.

Trinidad and Tobago returned for the second half determined to pull level, but they found the Jamaicans giving nothing away, keeping well organised. But it was the visitors who made the game safe when Bryan, under pressure from a towering defender in the centre circle, expertly brought under control Richard Edwards’ high clearance.

The Harbour View frontman then turned his marker before relaying the ball to the right for Eric Vernan to provide a wellweighted cross for him to nod home and silence the crowd.

Trinidad and Tobago tried desperately to get back into the game, but even with the ejection of Austin, Jamaica never looked in danger of conceding another goal.

Such was the confidence of Whitmore, who introduced a number of late changes, which kept the high level of play — sweeper Oneil Fisher looking particularly impressive in his six minutes on the pitch, which means Whitmore must now be looking towards Costa Rica with delight.

Source: jamaicaobserver.com

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