More than three weeks of fierce rivalry will climax to a delectable conclusion when the Guyana Defence Force throw down the gauntlet against Alpha ‘The Hammer’ United when the two teams clash for championship honours in the final of the 4th Annual GFA/Banks Cup Round Robin Knockout tournament at the National Stadium, Providence, January 1 next.
The action over the past weeks was indeed intriguing and the pundits had already earmarked Alpha and Pele as the two teams in the finals. The speculations and debates were put to rest when the Guyana Defence Force threw a monkey’s wrench in those predictions and defeated Pele 3-2 in a penalty shootout after regulation time of their match ended on a 3-3 stalemate. Even then, a keen tussle ensued until the soldiers sealed the deal to match skills with the winner of the feature attraction between Alpha and Western Tigers.
The former team continued its winning ways, defeating their nemesis 3-1 to set up a potential scorcher on New Year’s Day. Alpha owe a debt of gratitude to Dwayne Jacobs (34), Gregory ‘Jackie Chan’ Richardson (55) and Manasseh Primo (76), while the ‘Tigers’ lone response came off the boot of Colin Nelson from the penalty spot after Devon Millington was fouled in the box.
Delroy Fraser netted a brace for the Army in the 12th and 30th minutes during regulation time and he received support from Deon Alfred in the 50th minute. Pele’s retaliation came off the boots of Deon Alfred (24:50) and Calvin Sheppard (32) which effectively sent the teams to the penalty spot. Meanwhile, Brigadier of the GDF, Mark Phillips, was on hand to view the match and could hardly contain his ecstasy after the final penalty kick. He complimented his men and told them that while they ought to feel a great deal of pride, they must be cognizant of the fact that they have made every member of the GDF proud. He committed to continued support even as he urged the team to complete the job on New Year’s Day.
Alpha United domination of the tournament has propelled that team to the top of Group ‘A’ after crushing victories over Blackwater (17-0), Northern Rangers (16-0), the Guyana Police Force (2-0), and the GFC. That team will be priming up for the match with the soldiers. Fans are already licking their lips and Kaieteur Sport will speak with the respective principals for an in depth pre-match analysis that gives our readership a stronger ground for predictions.
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