May 29, 2013 Sports
Guyana’s representative at the inaugural Guinness ‘Caribbean Street Challenge’ Championship Back Circle will return as this country’s delegate in the regional competition after producing a ruthless performance to dismiss the lofty ambitions of East Coast champions Plaisance in the final of the national playoffs on Monday evening, at Demerara Park Tarmac (Banks DIH Parking Lot), Industrial Estate.
Playing against the East Coast Demerara champions, Back Circle made rings around a game, but clearly outclassed Plaisance side en route to a comfortable 4-1 triumph.
Plaisance failed to duplicate their semi-final display when they clinically dismantled Linden champions Silver Bullets 3-0, before running into a team that has been the most consistent in terms of results on the national grid.
Back Circle on a redemption path following an earlier loss to Plaisance was quickly into their stride, passing the ball fluently, while timely interceptions evidently disrupted the usually free flowing Warren Gilkes and Teyon Esmond.
However, the tournament’s leading marksman Andy Duke was in no mood to entertain any challenge and opened the scoring in the 4th minute when he slotted home a right footer to give his side the lead.
With the early ascendancy in their favour, the East Ruimveldt based side doubled their advantage through an excellent interchange between Vincent Thomas and Wayne Wilson that untied the Plaisance defense with the former finishing in style, firing in a right footed strike in the 19th minute that sent the crowd into frenzied revelry.
Apparently dazed by the unexpected setback and at the mercy of the partisan mass, Plaisance capitulated further and conceded another goal one minute later when Devon Harris netted. The lanky Harris upon receiving a pass from Thomas in the midfield area unleashed a powerful strike from the right flank that rested comfortably into the bottom of the goal.
Unable to create chances throughout the majority of the encounter, the East Coast side eventually managed to pull one back in the 22nd minute through a Kester Greene right footed strike from just outside the box.
With time and their championship aspirations quickly evaporating, Plaisance began to commit more players forward in pursuit of further goals to claim a positive result. Their frantic efforts, however, played right into the hands of the more seasoned Back Circle side as the ‘nail in the coffin’ was fittingly hammered in by Harris in the 25th minute.
He seized an intended pass to an opposing player deep in his territory and screamed down centre field on a swift counterattack and with only one defender to in his path, let fly a scorching right footed thunderbolt that avoided an onrushing defender and lodge in the back of the goal.
In the playoff for third place, Silver Bullets edged Victoria Church Yard 3-2 on penalties after regulation time failed to break a 1-1 deadlock.
Nigel Bennette scored for Silver Bullets in the sixth minute, while Andrew Holder gained the equalizer for Victoria Church Yard in the 23rd minute.
In semi-final results: Plaisance defeated Linden champions Silver Bullets 3-0. Warren Gilkes, Keyon Esmond and Prince Johnson scored in the 16th, 20th and 23rd minutes respectively.
Back Circle defeated Victoria Church Yard United 3-0 on penalty kicks in their semifinal encounter after regulation and extra times ended 1-1. Andrew Holder found the back of the net for Victoria in the 30th minute, while Back Circle equalized in the 32nd minute through Harris.
The winners received $400,000, runner-up $250,000, third place $150,000 and fourth place $75,000.
In the exhibition matchups, the Media defeated Oasis Taxi Service 1-0 while Guinness Bar overcame Banks DIH 2-1 on sudden death kicks as regulation time ended 1-1.
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