(Source: Winnfm) Basseterre, St. Kitts- The St. Kitts and Nevis national team defied all odds Thursday night at the Warner Park football stadium pulling off an improbable 2-2 draw with El Salvador in a crucial World Cup qualifier. It was a match the home side could have easily won had they held on to a 2-1 lead they earned midway in the second half after going down 1-0 in the first half.
The Warner Park was packed to capacity but the home crowd had little to cheer for in the first half going down 1-0 to a goal from Irving Herrera due to a defensive blunder from St. Kitts Nevis captain Atiba Harris. The score remained 1-0 at halftime, but the Sugar Boyz pressed for the equalizer and got it in the 68th minute through a stunning volley inside the box from local based player Orlando ‘Ack’ Mitchum. The crowd went wild and finally found their motivation for cheering on the team.
Then four minutes later, another stunning strike from overseas based Romain Sawyers snatched the lead in the 72nd minute. But with four minutes to go in regulation time and from a set piece, Nelson Bonilla got the equalizer with a header, sending a hush of disappointment in the capacity crowd. At the close of the match, coach for the St. Kitts and Nevis team Jacques Passy, while disappointed with not winning the match, was pleased with his team’s performance. He does not regret pushing for a third goal rather than defending the 2-1 lead.
Captain Atiba Harris acknowledged his mistake that gifted El Salvador the first goal but was pleased with the effort of his teammates. In the meantime, El Salvador’s coach Agustin Castillo told the media he knew that St. Kitts and Nevis would have been a tough opponent.
St. Kitts and Nevis will depart for El Salvador this weekend to prepare for the second leg which will be played on Tuesday. The federation will have to score two clear goals and outscore El Salvador on aggregate or score two goals while keeping a clean sheet to progress to the next round.