Sep 21, 2015 Sports
By Franklin Wilson
Home team Monedderlust, backed by a vociferous band of supporters, created the biggest upset yet of the inaugural Stag Elite League when day two action was contested at the #5 Ground, West Coast, Berbice on Saturday night.
Playing with passion, grit and a sense of wanting to be, Monedderlust erased a 2-0 deficit to cut down the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) 3-2 in an exciting feature game; the opening clash between Fruta Conquerors and Buxton United saw the former squeezing to a 1-0 win.
But it was the main attraction that had the fans on their feet for the entire showdown between two sides that know quite a bit of each other having engaged in a number of practice games over time.
Performing on the biggest platform for league football in Guyana was always going to bring out the best in both sides as pride and bragging rights are at stake in this eight team competition. However, it was the GDF that took charge of proceedings from the first whistle as they controlled play with their usual fast and energetic brand of football.
Monedderlust, coached by former National Gordon ‘Ultimate Warrior’ Braithwaite started very slowly and while they were still getting into competitive groove, GDF, by the 22nd were already 2-0 up.
Tyrone Lewis handed the Army the lead 13 minutes on while the nippy Delwin Fraser matched his teammate’s goal in the 22nd minute as the GDF held the ascendency. It was looking good for the City based team but Monedderlust, a side that somehow loves to battle from behind kept matching the pace of the GDF boys.
It was long after the second goal by the GDF that the home side reduced the advantage even though they were gifted a goal by the opposition. Twenty-nine minutes into the game, and as a result of the tables turning, pressure wise, GDF’s Kevin Sullivan did the unthinkable when he blasted the ball into his own nets much to the delight of Monedderlust and yes, the fans who swarmed the ground in celebration. GDF 2, Monedderlust 1.
Soon after the GDF made their first substitution when right back Jeffrey Perreira who was finding it difficult to deal with the pace of the Monedderlust forwards made way for Aubrey Greene in the 35th minute.
The half time whistle soon sounded and both teams welcomed the 15 minute respite to recalculate and re-strategise.
On resumption, no one would have been able to predict the final outcome of the match as the home side totally wrested the advantage and initiative from the GDF who could not deal with the pace of Travis Thom and Kevin Cottoy. Equally solid at the back was National Under-23 player, Kevin Layne Jnr.
Monedderlust displayed a high level of fitness and the will to conqueror as they never allowed the GDF players to intimidate them. The home team drew level seven minutes after the break when Captain Travis Henry nailed his shot past GDF custodian Oswald Cornette; again sending his teammates and the fans into wild celebrations in the 52nd minute.
And the celebrations did not end there as two minutes later, Monedderlust took the lead for the first time and as it turned out, the winning goal which came off the boot of the little tormentor, Kevin Cottoy.
The momentum was now with Monedderlust and they did well even as the GDF fought like true soldiers to get back on even terms, but that did not happen. While the Army utilised their full complement of subs as they sought the equalizer, Monedderlust only made two which enabled them to hold on for a memorable win and a perfect start to what will be intense football in the ensuing months.
The opening game was not as hectic as the feature but nonetheless Fruta Conquerors were able to keep the focus and take away full points. Golden Jaguar Eon Alleyne it was who saved the day for the Tucville based unit with a well-directed right foot volley in the first minute of added on time (90+1); on an assist from National Under-23 player, Jermaine Junor.
Matches will continue on Wednesday at GFC.
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