Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 8th 2013 Contents A54
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, July 8, 2013
A sold-out crowd was denied a
chance to see an intriguing contest
play out when nagging showers
descended upon the Queen s Park
Oval, St Clair, yesterday. The West
Indies had worked themselves into
a strong position, restricting the
Sri Lankans to 60 for three in 19
overs before bad weather brought
the game to a halt at 10.55 am.
Providing the weather allows, the
clash will continue today from the
Host West Indies is looking to
make it three wins from four match-
es and seal a berth in the final.
The ground staff was kept busy
as the rain stopped and started, and
at 1.30 pm, with little chance of
resumption under the gray skies,
officials postponed the remainder
of the match until today.
Three changes were made to West
Indies starting eleven with Dwayne
Bravo (suspended), Sunil Narine
(injured) and Denesh Ramdin (under-
performing) making way for fast
bowler Jason Holder and batsmen
Devon Smith and Lendl Simmons.
On a pitch offering more assis-
tance to the fast bowlers than on
Friday, Bajans Kemar Roach and
Holder picked up early wickets to
set the crowd into frenzy and spark
hopes of a blowout.
Fresh from his epic 174 not-out
on Tuesday, the dangerous Upal
Tharanga (7) mistimed a drive off
Holder s second over to Darren
Bravo, who took a tidy catch, diving
to his right in the covers. The very
next ball, Roach atoned for his way-
ward effort on Friday by picking up
the other key wicket of Jayawardene
(7), who top-edged a pull on to his
helmet before the ball popped up to
Smith at gully. From 19 for two, Sri
Lanka fell into further disarray when
ten runs later, Roach breached the
forward defence of Dinesh Chandi-
mal (2) with one that cut back dra-
matically and clipped the top of off
Enjoying one of his good days,
Roach continued to look threatening
as newcomers Lahiru Thirimanne
and Kumar Sangakkara cautiously
rebuilt the Sri Lankan innings. Thi-
rimanne looked particularly vulner-
able, crawling to 13 not out of 49
balls as he continually played and
missed during Darren Sammy s
excellent spell of 4-2-4-0. He and
Sangakkara (11 no off 33) had even-
tually added 31 in 12.4 overs by the
time play was stopped.
Donning the gloves in Ramdin s
absence, Johnson Charles twice
allowed wide balls to get past him
to the boundary and in all the 20
extras accounted for one third of the
Sri Lankan total.
Weather permitting, play will
resume this morning at 9.30.
Bowlers make Sri Lanka struggle at Oval
SRI LANKA INNINGS
U Tharanga c DM Bravo
b Roach ......................................................7
c Smith b Holder .................................7
K Sangakkara not out......................11
LD Chandimal b Roach....................2
HDRL Thirimanne not out ............13
Extras (lb 2, w 16, nb 2) ................20
Total (3 wickets; 19 overs) ......60
To Bat: AD Mathews, BMAJ
Mendis, KMDN Kulasekara,
SMSM Senanayake, SL Malinga,
Fall of Wickets: 1-19, 2-19, 3-29.
Bowling: Roach 7-2-19-2, Holder
5-0-20-1, Sammy 4-2-4-0, Best 3-
T&T will aim to defy the odds
and make its first winning start to
a Concacaf Gold Cup in 15 years
when they face off with El Salvador
in both teams opening encounter
at the Red Bull Arena, New Jersey,
from 7 o clock tonight.
Not since 1998, when T&T defeat-
ed Honduras 3--1 through a Stern
John brace and a lone goal by Jerren
Nixon, have the Soca Warriors made
a victorious start to the Gold Cup.
In 1996, in its opening clash, despite
a Russell Latapy double which lev-
elled the scores at 2--2 in the second
half, T&T lost out 3--2 to El Salvador.
The same El Salvador defeated T&T
2--1 in the 2007 opener.
Skipper Densill Theobald and
company are aiming to change the
record this time around.
"Why can t we believe we can
start the Gold Cup with a victory?"
"We re not outright favourites
because we ve been facing an uphill
task to get our football back in order
but we ve reached the Gold Cup.
We ve prepared well and we re able
to compete against teams like El Sal-
vador. We want to be off to a flyer
even though it s not going to be easy,"
Theobald said prior to the team s
official one-hour training session at
the Red Bull Arena, on Sunday.
"We ve got to believe, and I think
right now we are doing that. The
coaches Stephen Hart and of course
Leo Beenhakker have been instilling
into the back of our minds that we
can compete and be just as good or
better than these countries. Now we
will try to go out there and show it,"
said Theobald who will captain the
At the start of Saturday s training
at the Jersey City University Ground,
head coach Stephen Hart stressed
on concentration straight into
"We need complete concentration
all the time guys. Let s do it," Hart
said following the team prayer. Been-
hakker seconds later added "Qual-
ity... Quality. Let s show it."
Hart has carried the sessions with
assistants Hutson Charles and Derek
King and Beenhakker has had his
input at various intervals.
"It s been a really good effort on
the part of the staff so far. To com-
municate with the players and to get
their ideas over. I think coach Hart
and Beenhakker have worked well
so far," Ipswich Town midfielder,
Carlos Edwards noted.
Beenhakker in particular had one
on ones with the younger faces dur-
ing the sessions.
"That s good Kevin. You can talk
with your eyes on the pitch. You
don t need to know English. You can
talk with your eyes," he could be
heard telling Molino after the Orlan-
do City midfielder had whipped in
a cross moments earlier.
Racing Genk midfielder, Khaleem
Hyland is expected to marshal the
T&T midfield with Theobald while
Seon Power, Carlyle Mitchell and
Justin Hoyte will surely carry the
responsibilities at the back with young
duo Joevin Jones and Daneil Cyrus
also expected to be called upon.
T&T striking trio Kenwyne Jones,
Cornell Glen and Jamal Gay rotated
that position during Saturday s ses-
sion and looked equally sharp.
"We ve done well in the build-up
to the game and these next few hours
will be used to mentally prepare our-
selves for the match. Today we would
have had a review of the opponent
and the relevant information will be
discussed about how we will
approach the match. It s all down
to how well we start and settle into
our rhythm. That will determine
how we finish this opening match,"
Coached by Peruvian ex-player
Augustin Castillo, El Salvador will
have a strong 12th man with at least
five thousand or more fans expected
to be in support for the blub-clad
team. El Salvador has a heavy Amer-
ican accent to its squad with five
players born and raised in the US
including Derby Carrillo, Steven
Purdy, Gerson Mayen, Richard Men-
jivar and former US Under-17 player
T&T will play in white, donning
their new Joma kit while El Salvador
will take the field in blue. The match
referee is Marco Rodriguez of Mexico.
Competition rules allows T&T to
have 12 players on the substitutes
bench which means Hart will have
access to his full 23-man squad.
The game will be aired live on Fox
Soccer. T&T s fellow first round
opponents Honduras and Haiti will
face off in the second match of the
double header from 9 pm.
Warriors, El Salvador clash in Gold Cup opener
Groundsmen bring on the covers as the
showers came down on the Queen's Park
Oval pitch forcing a stoppage of the One
Day international game between the
West Indies and Sri Lanka in the tri-nation
series yesterday. PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
Members of T&T's senior national team attempt to keep the ball away from Cornell Glen during a training session,
at Jersey City University, New Jersey, on Saturday. T&T will kick off its 2013 Concacaf Gold Cup campaign versus El
Salvador at the Red Bull Arena, from 7 pm, tonight.
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