Sports

Sterling breaks Tivoli hearts with stoppage-time winner

Tivoli Gardens FC 0 Arnett Gardens FC 1 Sterling (90+3)

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

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A thunderbolt of a strike from the left foot of substitute Newton Sterling, in the third minute of added time in the second half, ensured that defending champions Arnett Gardens registered back-to-back wins to begin the defence of their Red Stripe Premier League title. The goal lifted them to a 1-0 win over rivals Tivoli Gardens at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex on Sunday.

Any game between these two West Kingston teams is usually close and tense and this early season match-up would prove no different. With the ageless Jermaine “Teddy” Johnson leading the line for Tivoli, the visitors got off to a lively start.

They came close to breaking the deadlock when Johnson released Andre Moulton down the right channel and the striker drove into the box before unleashing a right-footed, goal-bound effort that had Damian Hyatt diving full stretch to his right to turn around the post for a corner kick.

At the other end Vishinul Harris finished off a quick move through the midfield by Arnett Gardens, but his shot lacked venom and would prove an easy save for Davin Watkins in the Tivoli goal. Shortly after, Harris played in Lennox Russell who shot wide from 16 yards while under no pressure and was left holding his head.

Jermaine Johnson then came closest to scoring when he took a free kick from just outside the box that struck the right upright and rebounded into play. The ball fell to Sean Coleman but he was unable to keep his shot down as the ball flew high over the crossbar.

A key moment in the match came a few minutes before the break, when Tamar Edwards let fly a brilliant shot from all of 40 yards that required a magnificent save from Watkins, who tipped the ball over for a corner kick. The Tivoli custodian hurt his back on the play and required treatment in order to continue.

Arnett started the second half on the front foot and should have gone ahead just three minutes in, but Harris headed wide at the back post from a pin-point cross from Morgan.

Both coaches rang the changes as the match wore on but with neither team coming close, it appeared that the game was heading for a draw until Sterling stepped up with what proved to be the last kick of the game with a free kick just outside the Tivoli Gardens box.

With the home crowd begging for something, Sterling powered home a curling effort that went around the wall and pierced the roof of the net despite Clarke getting a left hand to it.

Jerome Waite credited his veteran striker Sterling for snatching the three points at the death.

“The substitute Newton Sterling made the difference. Overall it was a good tactical game. It was not a game where numerous chances were created because the two teams were doing well defensively and at all times the two goalkeepers came up big, but Sterling [scored] with his experience and his expertise as it relates to dead ball,” Waite said.

Omar Edwards, like his players, had a tough time coping with the loss.

“This is a hard one to take. To lose the game with the final shot of the match is really tough. We defended stoutly today and we deserved to get something out of the game,” he lamented.

Teams:

Arnett Gardens — Damian Hyatt, Oniel Thompson, Jamar Martin, Oniel Anderson, Ronaldo Wright (Geovaunie Samuda 83rd), Tamar Edwards, Vishinul Harris (Lamar Nelson 56th), Lamard Neil, Fabian Reid, Lennox Russell (Newton Sterling 67th), Marvin Morgan.

Subs not used: Shamarley Clayton, Kimani Arbouine, Rickardo Oldham, Damari Deacon.

Booked: O Anderson (35th)

Tivoli Gardens — Davin Watkins (Nicholas Clarke 63rd), Shavar Campbell, Barrington Pryce, Romaine Brakenridge, Nicholas Smith, Sean Coleman, Tevin Shaw, Andre Moulton, Howard Morris (Tkevin Garnett 69th), Jermaine Johnson, Peter Keyes (Junior McGregor 67th).

Subs not used: Nicholas Clarke, Romaine Linton, Rushane Facey, Authur Walters, Colorado Murray

Booked: P Keyes (31st)

Referee: Oshaine Nation

Assistant Referees: Jermaine Yee-Sing, Kemar Bailey

Fourth Official: Oketa Nicholson

Match Commissary: Lincoln Small

—Dwayne Richards

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