NEWS

Battle of the Gardens, as Arnett face Tivoli in RSPL

Sunday, October 01, 2017

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Defending champions and early leaders Arnett Gardens tackle fierce rivals Tivoli Gardens at 6 o'clock in one of five Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) games on today.

In what should have been a home game for Tivoli Gardens, the match will instead be played at today's rivals' home, as final repairs are being done at Edward Seaga Sports Complex.

In the other games all set for 3:30 pm starts, Cavalier Soccer Club host Harbour View at Stadium East; The University of the West Indies (UWI) travel to Humble Lion; Sandals South Coast FC welcome Portmore United to Frome, and Waterhouse host Reno at Drewsland. On Monday, Montego Bay United host Boys' Town at 8:35 pm.

Arnett Gardens, fresh from their 3-1 win over new boys Sandals, will have their hands full containing a Tivoli Gardens team that lost 0-1 to Reno and are eager to rebound.

Despite winning the league last season, Arnett Gardens failed to defeat Tivoli Gardens in three meetings. The first match drew 0-0, but Tivoli Gardens won the last two 3-2 and 3-0.

So, having picked up just one point from a possible nine against Tivoli Gardens last season, Arnett Gardens' Head Coach Jerome Waite is looking for a better display this time around.

“That is behind us but at the same time we want to start on a winning note where the Tivoli team is concerned. They defeated us twice last year and we only got a point, so we are looking forward to change that,” said Waite.

“This is one of the biggest games of the premier league and it's a game that always electrifies both teams. Despite Tivoli losing their first game against Reno, coming to Arnett we always expect a different Tivoli. It's all about rumble in the jungle,” said Waite.

Meanwhile, Tivoli's Omar Edwards is upbeat despite their opening season loss to Reno, a game he thought they should have won.

“Playing against Arnett Gardens is always going to be a difficult task and difficult game as both teams normally play very physical,” he noted.

“Both teams, I believe, have good quality players and we are anticipating a good game,” Edwards added.

But despite getting the better of Arnett Gardens last season, Edwards is not taking anything for granted, as Arnett Gardens went on to become champions.

“It's a new season and players want to start the season good. Arnett started with maximum three points. We are hoping that we will leave with a positive result,” said Edwards.

He continued: “We know it is going to be a good game and we are hoping that at the end of the day football will win and both teams put down the football and play some nice, attractive football, and I am hoping it goes in my favour.”

Tivoli Gardens will be once again looking towards veteran Jermaine Johnson, new signee Sean Coleman, Captain Romaine Breakenridge, Barrington Pryce, dancehall selector Junior “Shuttle Bus” McGregor, Howard Morris and Peter Keys for victory.

National players Fabian Reid, Marvin Morgan and Vishinul Harris will again lead the Arnett Gardens charge upfront along with Lennox Russell, Oneil Thompson and Damian Hyatt.

Meanwhile, last season's semi-finalist Humble Lion, currently in second spot, will make life extremely difficult for the UWI at Effortville. Humble Lion are coming off a hard-fought 2-1 win over Boys' Town, while UWI were held 1-1 by Waterhouse.

Former champions Harbour View and the promoted Cavalier will be hunting their first wins of the season when they clash at Stadium East. It should be a close affair with the edge going to the “Stars of the East”.

Last season's runners-up Portmore United hunt win number two when they play the promoted Sandals South Coast at Frome in Westmoreland. Portmore are coming off a 1-0 win over Cavalier, while Sandals South Coast lost 1-3 to Arnett Gardens. The more experienced Portmore United should emerge victorious.

Westmoreland-based Reno will be looking for their second win when they travel to Drewsland to play a Waterhouse team that drew their first outing against UWI 1-1.