Despite dominating much of the play and creating a plethora of chances, Bodden Town Football Club of the Cayman Islands had to settle for a goalless draw against the Singapore Under-23 National Team at the Trusts Arena in Auckland, New Zealand.
Swirling winds and a stubborn opponent frustrated the reigning Cayman Islands Football Association Premier League champions.
In his post-game assessment, head coach Elbert McLean said, “We played well but I think we should have won. The officiating was very poor, that played a big factor in the game. We played well in this type of weather and wind. Where we’re from, we’re not used to this type of weather. It’s much warmer where we’re from. I think my boys can rest up from here and get ready for the next game.”
Bodden Town created the more significant chances from the opening whistle with Ricoh Brown having the first clear shot on goal in the third minute. Bodden Town’s best chance of the opening half came in the 15th minute when Theron Wood hit the upright with a curling free kick.
Singapore also had their chances, but goalkeeper and captain Ramon Sealy was equal to the task at every stage. Sealy was also called to make crucial saves in the second half, denying the Singaporeans on several clear-cut, goal-scoring chances.
Coach McLean heaped praise on his custodian, he said, “Sealy was excellent, he always gives his best, he always gives us 150 percent.”
In the 67th, Singapore’s Shamil Sharif collected a pass from Stanely Ng and blasted a venomous shot at the Bodden Town goal, but Sealy made a magical reflex save.
Singapore coach Shunmugham Sin said he satisfied with the result.
“I’m very pleased with the boys’ performance, they gave 100 percent, created a lot of chances but unfortunately we were not able to take our chances,” Sin said. “Nevertheless, the boys did their best and I’m very pleased with their performance.”
Bodden Town collect one point from the draw and move on to face local champions Auckland City FC on Friday at 5 p.m. New Zealand time, which is 7 a.m. Cayman time. Looking ahead to their upcoming match, coach McLean said the team’s objective is clear: “Each match we play will be different. We are going for the three points.”
Auckland City FC tops Group A with 3 points, ahead of Bodden Town and Singapore.