A spirited performance saw Bonaire finish third at the 2013 ABCS Tournament after they won in normal time for only the second time in their history against Aruba yesterday. Two second half goals in 3 minutes from Ilfred Piar and Suehendley Barzey meant the non-FIFA side men upset the odds to conclude a fine campaign.
|Solid...Bonaire defend and Aruba attack|
Aruba won the event last year with Bonaire finishing a distant last and the FIFA side were favourites heading into the game. However in an even opening half few chances were carved out by either side, until Aruba took the lead just before the break.
A cross from the right channel was somewhat misjudged by Rugenio Josephia and veteran striker Maurice Escalona stooped to head home his 4th international goal.
Manager Rudsel Sint Jago made a triple substitution in midfield in the 66th minute and the decision had an immediate effect as Bonaire began to dominate play. Ramiro Coffie’s long-ball started life as a clearance but a slip in the Aruba defence allowed substitute Ilfred Piar to take one touch before firing past Eric Abdul.
|Leader...Bonaire captain Rolando Janzen|
The goal was Piar’s second for Bonaire and the shock turnaround was complete just 2 minutes later. On the back foot again the Aruba defence made another mistake which allowed Suehendley Barzey in. Barzey’s goal in the playoff final helped his club SV Juventus to the Bonaire title last month and he coolly finished beyond Abdul to make it 2-1.
Aruba pressed for an equaliser and Bonaire’s job was made harder when Real Rincon defender Igmard Gijsbertha received a second yellow card in the 83rd minute but they hung on for a memorable win.
Over the two games the new CONCACAF associate members demonstrated that they are ready to mix it with the rest of the Caribbean. This may happen soon – the 2014 Caribbean Cup draw takes place next month.
Match information -
Score: Bonaire 2-1 Aruba
Goals: Bonaire – Ilfred Piar 74', Suehendley Barzey 76'. Aruba – Maurice Escalona 43’.
Bonaire XI: Josephia; Rodriguez-Vergara, J. Beaumont [A. Beaumont 83’], R. Coffie, Gijsbertha; Pauletta [Valenzuela 66’], A. Piar [Makaai 66’], Janga, Janzen [I. Piar 66’]; Barzey; L. Coffie [Seinpaal 55’].