Nail GDF 2-1: 10-man Sunburst Camptown beat Milerock 3-1 for 3rd
By Franklin Wilson
The ‘Hammer Power’ outlasted the ‘Army Power’ as Alpha United romped to victory by a 2-1 margin over the Guyana Defence Force to lift the inaugural Guyana Football Federation Super League Championship and the One Million Dollar first prize on Sunday evening at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence. GDF walked away with $500,000 for their efforts.
Ten-man Sunburst Camptown whipped Linden’s Milerock 3-1 to take the 3rd place cheque of $300,000 and trophy while Milerock settled for the 4th prize of $200,000.
The opening game of the triple header saw the National Under-20 team, preparing for regional competition next year, holding a National Super League X1 to a 1-1 tie. The Super League X1 took the lead after 16 minutes of exchanges through a Pierre Joseph effort but second half substitute and prolific junior striker Manasseh Primo ensured a draw with a late second half goal.
Alpha, regarded as the most successful club in Guyana, once again showed why they are so regarded with a solid performance coming from behind. They erased Delroy Deen’s 20th minute goal with efforts of their own, first with one minute to go to the half way mark when Dwight Peters, a former GDF player cancelled out Deen’ effort.
The winner was clinically tapped over the head of the GDF custodian by the hard working attacking right-back Dwain Jacobs in the first of two minutes of added on time, Alpha underlining their class and dominance of club football in the Land of Many Waters.
The GDF started the encounter in very enterprising fashion and clearly showed that their period of encampment made a difference as they were consistent in attack while defending well also. The strike duo of Stellon David and Deen signaled early that they were in no mood to allow Alpha to dictate the flow of the game.
On the first run down, David dribbled two opposing players and fired to goal to the applause of the almost two thousand spectators.
Their early dominance produced the anticipated result when they cracked the Alpha defence on a fast break and Deen on a pass from David with ease and confidence slammed the ball past the usually efficient Ronson Williams.
The exchanges continued with Alpha winning a free kick just outside the area but the shot went wide of the uprights. Like true champions, Alpha with Captain Howard Lowe marshalling his troops well, played a patient game.
GDF for some reason in the closing stages of the first half decided to change their game plan and were content with being more defensive which was what the relentless and ever nagging Alpha wanted. Dwight Peters took the opportunity to nail the equalizer.
The second half was not as eventful as the first but both teams tried their best to create chances whilst being stout in defence. The contest became a battle of concentration as goals dried up and the physical and mental preparation of both teams becoming the main focus.
It was Alpha though, who won in this respect and like they did against Milerock in their extra time semi-final epic, they nailed their opponents at the death.
Fans and supporters were preparing for another extra time game as the 90 minutes of regulation time elapsed and Referee Stanley Lancaster signaled to the fourth official to put up two minutes of added on time on the hand clock.
Whilst all present were thinking that this battle will go into extra time, Dwain Jacobs had different ideas and in the first minute of added on time he produced the Million Dollar goal as he dribbled the GDF left back before shooting home to bring an end to this inaugural Super League while sealing yet another tournament win for Alpha.
According to their Captain and elder statesman Howard Lowe, “This is a dream year for us and we will now up the ante with our preparations for the 20th Kashif and Shanghai championship.”
Sunburst Camptown in the third place game was reduced to ten men midway the second half when Telson McKinnon was booked for the second time. But McKinnon’s expulsion seemed not to bother the Campbellville boys who went on to defeat Milerock 3-1.
Chris Camacho in the 6th, Norris ‘Fudgy’ Carter back in the reckoning after a long break looked in good nick as he caused the Milerock defence all sorts of problems and capped a good night when he nailed the second goal from a Nigel Codrington pass that split the defence in the 54th minute.
Reshawn Sandiford sealed the third place cheque with their 3rd goal from the penalty spot in the 77th minute. Milerock had drawn even when they were awarded a penalty kick in the 25th minute, Derrol Dainty converting.
Prime Minister Samuel Hinds was on hand to present the winning trophy to the Champions apart from meeting the teams before the start of the final. Commodore Gary Best was also on hand to witness the championship game as was Administrator of Win in CONCACAF with CONCACAF FIFA Funded Project, Trinidadian Keith Look Loy who presented the winning cheque to Alpha United.
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