Star leg-spinner Shadab Khan will be returning to the Trinbago Knight Riders after a fitness test in Pakistan later this month.
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W Connection, Pt Fortin Civic in key clash
Four-time Digicel T&T Pro League champion W Connection will be keen to boost its quest for a fifth title when it faces Pt Fortin Civic FC in the feature match of a double-header at the Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva from 8 pm tonight.
Two hours earlier, second placed Central FC, the league’s inform team will be out to keep up the pressure with a victory over fifth placed Police.
The lawmen are also in the hunt for a top two finish and a place in next year’s Caribbean Football Union Club Championship qualifers, making today’s double-header much more intriguing.
W Connection will enter today’s match with 41 points from 19 matches, six more than Central FC while North East Stars (33), Pt Fortin (32), Police (27) and defending champions Defence Force, a point behind complete the top six.
Despite entering tonight’s match against Police unbeaten in 13 matches, Central FC and its English coach Terry Fenwick knows it will be a difficult task since it has failed to beat Police in two previous league clashes.
In fact, the Richard Hood-coached lawmen, 4-0 and 3-0 winners over St Ann’s Rangers and San Juan Jabloteh respectively in their last two matches will be eager for the contest having crushed the “Central Sharks” 4-1 in the first round meeting followed by a 0-0 draw in the second round.
Central will be boosted by the return of influential midfield pair, captain Marvin Oliver and Ataullah Guerra, who were both suspended for Friday’s 2-0 win over Pt Fortin.
Should Central win, it will add more pressure on both W Connection and Pt Fortin Civic which have already met on three occasions this season.
First, W Connection outlasted Civic 6-5 on penalties in the First Citizens Cup after a 0-0 draw, then defeated the southerners 2-0 in the League at Couva.
But Pt Fortin enjoyed its day in the sun when it edged W Connection 2-1 in round two, its first league loss.
Charles Stuart Fevrier, the St Lucian-born coach said, “Every game right now is important and we feel we have an equal chance against Civic. We are treating every game as a final.”
Despite his team’s six point lead, Charles-Fevrier who has already led his club to the Digicel Charity Shield, Toyota Classic and FA Trophy, still believes there is always concern
He explained, “Whether we are on top or even when we aren’t on top, we are the team that everyone wants to beat. But that only makes us better.”
Pt Fortin coach and former national and W Connection midfielder, Reynold Carrington is also taking each of his team’s remaining five matches as finals and says three points against W Connection will keep his team in the title race.
Carrington added. “We aren’t far behind and victory will also do well for the confidence for the remainder of the league games.
A key to Pt Fortin’s chance of victory will be joint league top scorer Marcus Joseph, moreso in the absence of the experienced Andre Toussaint who was red-carded against Central.
National midfielder Joevin Jones who has netted ten league along with strikers Jerrel Britto, Hashim Arcia and Surinamese duo Stefano Rijssel and Dimitrie Apai are all available for W Connection while defender Mekeil Williams missed out through suspension.
Tomorrow (Saturday), Defence Force, will be keen to erase the memories of their failed bid to get to the 2014/2015 Concacaf Champions League after ending second in its three-team Caribbean Football Union Club Championship qualifying group when it meets North East Stars at Couva from 4pm in a rescheduled fixture.
Today: Venue: Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva
Central FC vs Police, 6 pm
W Connection vs Pt Fortin Civic, 8 pm
Venue: Larry Gomes Stadium, Malabar
Defence Force vs St Ann’s Rangers, 4 pm
Teams P W D L F A Pts
W Connection 19 12 5 2 37 13 41
Central FC 19 9 8 2 36 17 35
N/East Stars 19 9 6 4 22 13 33
Pt Fortin Civic 19 10 2 7 28 20 32
Police 18 8 3 7 26 26 27
Defence Force 15 8 2 5 29 21 26
Caledonia 17 5 6 6 24 21 21
Jabloteh 19 3 2 14 19 45 11
Rangers 19 1 0 18 13 58 3