Barbados Defence Force Sports Programme (BDFSP) and Weymouth Wales, two of the most pre-eminent teams in the modern era of Barbados’ football, will clash in the final of the Barbados Football Association’s Knockout Competition.
Just last week Sunday, the Asquith Howell-coached BDFSP team defeated Wales 5-4 on aggregate to lift the BFA Premier League championship playoff trophy. Now both sides will meet once more having won their respective knockout semifinal matches last night at the BFA’s Wildey, St. Michael, AstroTurf.
BDFSP, last year’s runners-up to Paradise Club, trounced Crane and Equipment Ellerton Football Club 7-2 in the second semifinal encounter. Meanwhile, former double crown champions Weymouth Wales flogged Brittons Hill United 6-2 in the opening match.
BDFSP convincingly won but the match did not end in peace as an altercation ensued in the 63rd minute with Ellerton and forced referee Matthew Alleyne to distribute three red cards at which stage the score was 3-2 to the former.
Akeem Hill was suspended during the premier league championship playoff against Wales and received another red card yesterday wearing the BDFSP uniform. Ellerton pair of Romario Drakes and Rosean Brathwaite were also sent packing.
An own-goal by Anson Barrow proved costly for Ellerton as BDFSP took that early 1-0 advantage less than a minute into the game. But Ellerton responded with two great goals to take the lead [2-1] compliments captain Shakille Belle [penalty] and Roshon Gittens in the sixth and 27th minutes respectively. But that was as good as it got for Ellerton.
BDFSP, despite being a goal down, remained composed and worked the ball through the midfield and often spread it wide on the flanks. The soldiers equalised 2-2 on the stroke of halftime thanks to attacking midfielder Omani Leacock with a goal in the 45th minute.
Leacock as always mesmerised with his scintillating on- the-ball movement that kept Ellerton defence on their toes as he accounted for a brace with the other being scored in the 80th minute.
The diminutive player was well-supported upfront with the help of Rashad Smith, T’Shane Lorde and Jamal Brathwaite who all did an excellent job despite not having the services of captain and national utility player Raheim Sargeant.
BDFSP boosted their midfield with an early substitution in the second half when Jamal Chandler came on in the 46th minute for his namesake Jamal Brathwaite.
The army men went on to dominate the remainder of the contest with a goal each from Rashawn Kellman, Jelani Keizer in the 54th and 74th minutes while Antonio Arthur scored in the 77th and Damario Ward in the 90th.
As expected in the opening Champions Cup semifinal, Wales had their way with Brittons Hill, and national defender Ramar Miller was first on the score sheet with a well-connected header. The ball scored to the right of goalkeeper Nashton Browne in the 20th minute.
Brittons Hill went on the attack in search of the equaliser, and a bad foul by Rico Graham on Jabarry Lucas saw the opposition being awarded a penalty. Zidkigah Samuel stepped up to the 12-yard penalty spot in the 27th minute and hammered the shot right of Wales goalkeeper Omari Eastmond who went the opposite direction.
However, Wales wasted no time regaining the advantage when in the 32nd minute a through ball found Shaquille Boyce on the right of the field and he finished superbly inside the 18-yard box.
Wales, as expected, dominated most of the possession throughout the opening half and led at halftime.
Wales continued with the ball dominance which resulted in an early second-half goal scored by Antone Greaves. A missed opportunity by Hadan Holligan inside the 18-yard box found Greaves who took on two defenders and scored past goalkeeper Nashton Browne .
Wales appeared as though they were in control, but Brittons Hill went on the attack and former national player Carl Joseph cut the deficit by one [2-3] with a powerful strike past goalkeeper Omari Eastmond.
When things were looking up for Brittons Hill, Wales were rewarded a penalty after Eriq Puckerin was found guilty of handling the ball inside the area. Romario Harewood scored in the 61st minute and gave Wales the 4-2 lead.
Both Harewood and Greaves scored a brace each with the former registering his second in the 82nd minute while Greaves accounted for his second in the 73rd minute.