April 13, 2006
Footballers off to Cuba

This country’s Under-21 male footballers can expect their sternest test from host Cuba, in their quest for qualification from Group 4 to the Central American and Caribbean Games in Cartagena, Colombia in July.

The Vincentians meet the host 16th April in what was pre- arranged as the virtual decider, granted the status of both countries history in the Caribbean sphere.{{more}}

St. Vincent and the Grenadines was expected to meet Antigua and Barbuda last Wednesday in the opening match, with Cuba and the Leeward Islanders meeting each other tomorrow, Friday 14th April.

The 16-member Vincentian team left last Monday, with Head Coach Zoran Vranes.

The players who are charged with bringing back glory for this country are Kevin Abraham, Richard Hayde, Theon Gordon, Markneil Lewis, Chester Morgan and Rawlston Williams as defenders.The strikers selected are Gevandean Baptiste, Orande James and Steven Henry.

Millon Prescott, Damal Francis, Rafeek Fancois, Lexroy Bulze, Seinard Bowens travelled as midfielders with Dwayne Peters and Winslow Williams as the two goal keepers.

Two players, Saski Weekes and Norrell George who featured in two match series against Barbados in February had to be sidelined because of injury.

The Vincentians played their Barbadian counterparts in friendlies, losing 1-2 in the first match and winning the second 1-0.

These were the only regional exposure the team had before their outing in Cuba.

However, they were engaged in warm up matches against top local clubs as part of their preparations.

St.Vincent and the Grenadines have never matched the Cubans at this age level, but the senior team in 1995 beat their senior opponents to gain a spot in the CONCACAF Gold Cup in the USA the following year.

Apart from Vranes, the other members of the official party comprise President of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation (SVGFF) St. Claire Leacock as Head of Delegation, Manager- Roxell John, who will double up as Spanish interpreter. Also with the team are Assistant Coach Roger Gurley, Physiotherapist-Nichola Corsovic and Team Doctor- Dr. Perry DeFreitas.

Already qualified are Haiti, El Salvador, Honduras, and Jamaica.