A 20-member T&T senior women’s football and four officials team left Piarco on Tuesday for a four-match training camp in Charleston, South Carolina, USA, which kicked off against Charleston Southern University at the Patriots Point Athletic Complex in Mt Pleasant, South Carolina from 7 pm (local time), yesterday.
Today, the T&T women’s team under technical director Anton Corneal and coach Marlon Charles, will continue their preparations for the Caribbean Football Union leg of 2015 FIFA World Cup qualification versus the College of Charleston at the same venue from 7.30 pm.
The squad which has been in training for the past few months following their tour of England last August during which they won all matches played, will continue their tour with another fixture against University of South Carolina at USC Stone Stadium from 6 pm on Saturday before closing out their tour against Coastal Carolina University on Sunday from 6 pm in Conway, South Carolina.
A former senior men’s team World Cup as Under-17 and U-20 assistant coach, Corneal, has been overseeing the team’s preparations and says the games will go a long way in the team’s build up to the qualifiers for the FIFA World in Canada 2015.
“It’s just that opportunity to have the players together in a camp atmosphere and to get some valuable match practice before the qualifiers begin. These College teams are of a decent standard and will offer a good challenge to our players,” said Corneal.
“A lot of our opponents in the CONCACAF are well into their preparations and we cannot afford to slip far behind if we intend to challenge for a spot at the World Cup. If we are to be serious about this then we have got to try our best to get the team ready and this trip will help our efforts.”
The 20-player squad includes Maylee Attin-Johnson, former national U-17 and US-based goalkeeper Linfah Jones, Tasha St Louis, prolific goalscorer and T&T Football Association Women’s Player of the year for 2013 Kennya Cordner, Jo-Marie Lewis and Canadian-based defender Arin King among others. Vernetta Flanders is the team manager with Rajesh Latchoo serving as assistant coach.
The CFU qualifiers are expected to kick off in just under a month (April 7-14) and the local women’s team has their eyes set on a historic first ever qualification.
T&T squad for Charleston:
Maylee Attin-Johnson, Rhea Belgrave, Kennya Cordner, Karyn Forbes, Kimika Forbes, Janine Francois, Dernelle Mascall, Anastasia Prescott, Tasha St Louis, Patrice Superville, Arin King, Afiyah Mathias, Kenya Charles, Jonelle Warrick, Camille Borneo, Lauryn Hutchinson, Linfah Jones, Annalis Cummings, Jo-Marie Lewis and Shenelle Henry.
Technical staff: Anton Corneal (technical director), Marlon Charles (coach), Rajesh Latchoo (assistant coach), Vernetta Flanders (manager)