“Whoever took his life has to pay and they will pay very soon.”
Those were the words of a man said to be like a grandfather to nine-year-old Cyon Paul during his funeral yesterday.
This country’s Under-15 Soca Princesses will be hoping to end the inaugural Concacaf U-15 Championship on a high when they meet Honduras in their third place play-off from 6.30 pm today at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex, Cayman Islands.
It will be the second meeting between T&T and Honduras in the tournament, after the Soca Princesses won their group meeting 2-0 a week ago, with a goal each from midfielder Alexis Fortune in the 14th and Germany-based defender Amaya Ellis in the 53rd.
Both teams meet for third after losing their respective semi-final matches at the same venue on Friday night. T&T suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat to Canada in their semi-final clash, while Haiti blanked Honduras 2-0 in the second match. Coached by Rajesh Latchoo, the Soca Princesses put up a brave display and matched the highly-rated Canadians in a keenly-contested affair in suffering their first defeat in five games.
For Canada, Anyssa Ibrahim struck the game’s lone goal in the 15th minute, firing a right-footed shot from 25-yards out into the upper-right corner of the net past goalkeeper Khil Keshwar.
Soon after, the 15-year-old midfielder had two additional attempts, but Keshwar did well to thwart both. The Soca Princesses nearly went ahead earlier, when Raenah Campbell outpaced the Canada defence only to see her effort blocked by goalkeeper Lysianne Proulx, while in a second-half bid to equalise, a 25-yard volley off the foot of T&T’s Arianna Campbell hit the underside of the crossbar.
Latchoo later credited his team for their strong showing. “We knew it was going to be difficult and maybe a lot of people expected us to get hammered by Canada which has a far advanced programme and they are a giant in women’s football, but we showed a lot of courage and ability to compete at this level. I’m proud of the girls,” he said.
“We tried to give the team the best preparation possible within the resources that were available to us and it showed clearly that there was some value coming out of it. “We were four games unbeaten and we posed a decent challenge against a team like Canada which augurs well for local women’s football. This team will definitely continue to prepare and be kept together for the next U-17 World Cup campaign.” Following the T&T and Honduras, Canada and Haiti will face off in the final, with both teams having played to a 1-1 draw in their round-robin group encounter.