Blazers happier with Dudley Eve draw
Group B remains wide open after Boulevard Blazers held champions Devonshire Cougars to a draw in the Dudley Eve Trophy.
In a scrappy affair, Boulevard took the lead against the run of play only for Cougars to hit back three minutes later.
After a minute of silence was observed for late Cougars and Warwick defender David “Shaggy Dog” Wilson before the kick off, the Cougars came charging out of the blocks.
They enjoyed the early exchanges but were rocked back on their heels when Keemo Smith scored from a set-piece.
Boulevard were awarded a free kick just outside of the penalty box after Mark Steede, the Cougars striker, handled the ball. After picking his spot, Smith curled his free kick over the wall and into the roof of the net past Ricardo Brangman, the Cougars goalkeeper.
The Cougars clawed their way back into the match when Shakii Pearman calmly slotted past Jahi Shakir, the Boulevard goalkeeper, after some skilful play by Cashun Brangman.
The Cougars nearly went ahead through former Boulevard player Ijahmon Mallory, who brought off a superb fingertip save from Shakir who somehow managed to keep out his former team-mate’s swerving 30-yard blast.
Boulevard made a change at the start of the second half with left back Zico Stovell making way for Terrence Stovell.
Walker tested Brangman with a close-range effort and the Cougars’ hearts were in their mouths again when Brangman made a reflex save to thwart Douglas from close range after the striker was picked out by Walker in the box.
Fatigue and cramp took its toll on both teams with Boulevard forced to play a man short until the final whistle after midfielder Nico Smith was initially treated for cramp and then limped off with a foot injury with his team’s substitutes having already been used up.
Omar Butterfield, the Cougars coach, was far from pleased with his team’s showing.
“The guys were not executing and doing their jobs properly and I hope this is a wake-up call for them,” he said.
In stark contrast, Shane Powell, the Boulevard president, was satisfied with the outcome.
“I have to give kudos to my team for drawing with the defending champions,” he said. “They really fought hard and this result will definitely raise our confidence.”
Boulevard (4-4-2): J Shakir - Z Stovell (T Stovell, 46), A Foggo, J Williams, A Famous - A Smith (sub: R Tyrell, 66), N Smith, K Smith, T Walker - K Davis (sub: J Samuels, 53), T Douglas. Booked: N Smith. Substitutes not used: D Taylor, Y Darrell, T Butterfield
Devonshire Cougars (4-5-1): R Brangman - J Butterfield, Zekiro White, Zeko White, D Williams (sub: S Jones, 73)- I Mallory, C Maybury, S Pearman (sub: N Simmons, 73), C Brangman, M Battersbee - M Steede (sub: J Mallory, 63). Booked: Maybury. Substitutes not used: K Trott, Z Simmons, J Wade, D Simmons.
Referee: A Francis
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