Matchday One Review
Updated: Nov 21, 2020
The opening day of the Caribbean Mega League came around excitingly soon and in the aftermath of COVID-19 fans flocked to the islands that make up the Caribbean in search of an exciting new league created in an attempt to try and restart football with excitement in abundance. Over 240,000 spectators crammed into the brand spanking new stadiums to witness matches in Dominica, Jamaica, Barbados, St. Kitts & Nevis, Bermuda and the Dominican Republic respectively as six games kicked off with a huge roar. The eyes of world football were finally on the Caribbean and it felt oh so right!
With anticipation building, most had predicted a cagey set of opening games and that was exactly what would be in store, with the only clear-cut result coming from Palo Park as Tom Meadowcroft’s Republican Rabbits feasting on the flesh of Antigua and Barbuda’s Redonda Rockys in a 2-0 victory to set the Dominican Republic at the top after matchday one. Two goals just before half-time were enough as Erick Ozuna and Juan Vélez scored from the pick of the sixteen shots they managed against young Vino Barclett in Da Rockz goal. Talk about a rocky start! Listen to more from Tom in his interview with Bob.
The most goals to come in one game came from the Levi Roots Arena in Kingston, Jamaica as Jamrock Juniors became the first and only team to lose a home game so far. It didn’t start well for the hosts as Haiti’s Vodou People crept ahead through Frantz Moise just fifteen minutes in, but when Newton Sterling equalised shortly after from the spot it was game on again. A Charlemagne Chaderson free-kick proved to be the winner, even though the visitors had a late penalty that should have rounded things up, making for an entertaining 2-1 win for Haiti’s finest.
Only one draw was observed in the opening round and although Casey Castle made history by scoring the first ever Caribbean Mega League goal in six minutes for Bermuda Tempest, Will Clark and his Limbo Leopards fought back through Jamal Creighton in a game that was truly 50-50. Elsewhere there were three other games, all ending 1-0 to the respective home teams, with teenager Noah Nichols doing the business for the Bajan Boppers as Bennett secured three points over Suriname Sharks, Carlos Bertie poaching the only goal at Sugar Lane as Moko-Jumbies FC saw off Max Alderson’s Ajax Oranjestad and in an all-round player of the round display, centre-back Malcolm Joseph grabbed the winner for Dominica Dominoes against Sophie Dibbens’ Spicy Doves side.
Matchday two will give the chance to the Rabbits to show their true values as they head over to Trinidad to face the Leopards, meanwhile Vodou People and Dominica Dominoes face-off after both winning their opener. Elsewhere, Redonda Rockys and Jamrock Juniors will both look for a first point or three, whilst the Doves, the Sharks and the Oranje Boys all look to bounce back from opening defeats as they take on Moko-Jumbies, Tempest and Bop 2 Da Top respectively. Tune in, there’s bound to be loads more thrills and spills!