All bets are off and it will be a Weymouth Wales and Ellerton square off in the final of the Barbados Football Association’s inaugural Capelli SuperCup.
Despite the showers that drenched the Wildey Turf earlier, Wales defeated the Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme (BDFSP) 3-1 in the nightcap game, while Ellerton got the upper hand over UWI Blackbirds with the lone goal of the game from talisman Shakille Belle, bringing them up to 34 goals; the most for the tournament.
Playing minus regular captain and defender Shane Codrington, Akeem Hill stepped up for the soldiers, while the St Ann’s Fort side saw the return of Head Coach Asquith Howell.
The game started fast and heavy and Romario Harewood drew first blood for Wales in the 18th minute, after converting a penalty following goalkeeper’s Kishmar Primus’ challenge inside the box, to give them the upper hand.
Two minutes later the soldiers had a shot with a free-kick taken by Rashad Jules, but the ball went over the wall of defenders and was parried by keeper Omari Leacock.
Then in the 28th minute, Shaquille Boyce’s low corner was driven into the side net, after curling toward near post off a corner, to take the lead.
But the soldiers were able to pull one back eight minutes later off of Nicholas Best. Leacock had an unfortunate collision with his teammate and punched the ball into Best’s path, who used the error to his team’s advantage.
As Wales continued with their four – two – three – one system set by Head Coach Thomas Jordan, Walton Burrowes buried the ball, slapping the back of the net in the 50th minute with a superb turn and hit in true striker finish.
Wales turned up the heat against BDFSP to pressure them, clearing every opportunity and challenge they found thereafter. The Carrington Village side was able to hold steady at 3-1, to end the game with the golden ticket into the finals and a shot at the $50,000 grand prize.
In the opening encounter, UWI, who maintained the upper hand in the first 15 minutes of the game, scored first with a right-foot finish from Akeene Browne, but it was ruled offside much to the dismay of the team.
But it was Ellerton, previous David Thompson Memorial Constituency Football Classic titleholders, who went on the counter-attack in the 23rd minute. And Captain Shakille Belle finished brilliantly through the legs of Kerry Holder, to trickle into the far corner and put the former New Zealand marksman up to his tenth goal for the tournament.
The Blackbirds came back at full flight eight minutes later and scored again off a corner, which was headed in at near post, but the referee declared the ball did not go over the line, despite the appeals by all.
There were some unnecessary yellow cards given during the 96 minutes of play. One of them being taken by Romario Drakes who kicked the ball away in frustration, only to be met by referee Kevon “Inches” Clarke’s hand dipping into his top pocket.
As the second half rolled around, UWI’s captain, Tito Beckles was red-carded after a challenge right on the line, bringing the Blackbirds down to ten men, following a yellow card in the first half.
And while they tried resolutely to get the upper hand, it was not to be, even with former National Captain Mario Harte making an instinctive shot from deep in the midfield in the 63rd minute, that went just wide of its mark.
Both teams continued for the remainder of the game with some opportunities which they were both unable to capitalize on. UWI’s biggest shot at levelling the score came on the 90th-minute mark. Rommel Bynoe, who was mere meters away from the nets took a shot for all he was worth, but custodian Jamar Brewster was right there to stop the ball in its track as the fans erupted in the stands.