Draw puts Seba back into DPL

Howard Walker

Thursday, June 02, 2011    

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SEBA United qualified for the Digicel Premier League by battling from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Rivoli United at the Spanish Town Prison Oval yesterday.

The Montego Bay-based club finished second in the four-team play-off series with 10 points — two behind Highgate and three ahead of Cavalier.

Rivoli United ended at the bottom with two points from six games.

Seba, the Western Confederation champions, were making a return to the nation's top league for the first time in three years after being relegated in the 2007/2008 season.

But things were not so easy for the St James outfit as they fell two goals behind with just 17 minutes on the clock.

Fidel Anderson struck two goals in two minutes, netting in the 15th and 17th for Rivoli United.

Last Sunday, Anderson caught the eye of Brazilian coach Luciano Gama, who is scouting for players for the Under-23 programme.

But substitute Garth "Andy" Johnson who replaced Jeremy Bucknor in the 61st minute scored with his first touch in the 62nd, and again in the 72nd.

With news filtering through that Cavalier was trailing Highgate at Grays Inn, the celebrations began with the blowing of horns and whistle-blowing.

However, the champagne-poppings was left for the final whistle as the Montego Bay fans swarmed the field and celebrated with their team.

A jubilant coach Omar Clarke said his team deserved to be back playing top-flight football.

"We wanted to win this game and come out on top, but we are back in the Premier League," said Clarke.

"It's a very good feeling. Seba is where we are supposed to be and we will prepare ourselves to stay in the Premier League," he added.

The former three-time Premier League champions thus went unbeaten in their domestic Western Confederation Super League, and also in the play-off series.

For Rivoli United, the South Central Confederation winners, they will have to wait another year before attempting a return to the Premier League after being relegated in the 2009/2010 season.




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