Tournament favourite, Wismar/Christianburg held their nerve to defeat a game Ash Education, 4-2 on penalties and clinch the championship trophy of the inaugural Chico/Kashif and Shanghai Elite Next Generation Tournament on New Year’s Day.
Under the floodlights of the Georgetown Football Club (GFC) ground, the Linden-based outfit outgunned the spirited Berbicians
from 12 yards after the match ended 1-1 in normal time to create history as the first team to claim top honours of the tournament which initially kicked off on December 8.
After tournament MVP, Shane Luckie buried a free kick from 20 yards to give Wismar/Christianburg the advantage in the fourth minute, the ball weavers of Ash Education subsequently went into attack mode, pressing for the equalizer.
With the students of Linden content on playing defence to preserve their lead, the Berbicians found it hard to find the back of the net throughout the remainder of the first half and went to the locker room goalless.
After the break, both teams came out with renewed vigour as Wismar/Christianburg tried to go up two while Ash Education searched for the equaliser.
The Berbicians however were the ones rewarded in the 76th minute when Akeemo Watts nailed a free kick from just outside the 18-yard box.
Throughout the remainder of the final, both units pressed for the game winner but their efforts were off target and the game was decided on penalties.
In the third place match, the Region Seven-based Waramadong Secondary School thrashed St. George’s High School, nine-nil in the one-sided encounter.
The tournament’s leading goal scorer Lyndell Joseph (seven goals) recorded a helmet trick (10th, 32nd, 68th and 88th), Deon Rodrigues (2nd and 79th) and Whazir Bascombe (39th and 74th) added braces while the tournament’s best midfielder, Myles Albert (71st) padded the scoreline.
For winning the MVP award, Luckie took home a trophy, a Kindle tablet and will travel to Trinidad and Tobago in August for a one-month stint with a pro club. The winner of the tournament is set to pocket a record $1.2M in cash of which 75% will go towards a project identified by the school.
They will also receive a trophy and 25 replicas along with the prize money.
The institutions which placed second, third and fourth will each receive prize monies amounting to $750,000, $500,000 and $250,000, in cash respectively.
The second and third place teams will receive trophies and 25 silver and bronze medals respectively, while the fourth place team will receive a trophy.
Wismar/Christianburg are also the two-time and defending champions of the Digicel Nationwide Schools Tournament.
The best coach award went to Anthony Stephens of Wismar/Christianburg while Yannick Simon of the same team took home the best goal keeper trophy. Kevin Layne of Ash Education was adjudged the best defender.