PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad CMC- Trinidad and Tobago and New Zealand battled to a goalless draw in a friendly football international at the Hasely Crawford Stadium Tuesday night.
The Soca Warriors had three opportunities to score in a dramatic episode within the space of two minutes which began in the 42nd minute.
Captain Kenwyne Jones sent a 25-metre freekick which was parried, to his left, by an airborne Glen Moss.
From a right-sided throw, the ball was relayed by Kevin Molino to Jones who saw his left-footer blocked by a defender resulting in a corner.
And, from the set piece, Lester Peltier’s ball from the back was met by an onrushing Abu Bakr who sent his header over the crossbar.
Jeremy Brockie could have given the visitors a 44th minute lead, after capitalising on a weak headed clearance from left-back Sheldon Bateau but his right-footer sailed over the bar.
The tempo slowed down considerably in the second half with New Zealand introducing a strong defensive game.
Both teams each had a chance to score the game-winner in the latter stages of the contest.
Kasta Barbarouses ran on to a defence-splitting pass from substitute Jake Butley and, with reserve goalie Marvin Phillip approaching, hesitated and a back-tracking Justin Hoyte prevented the home team from falling behind. Five minutes later Jones was one-on-one with Moss after receiving a pass from substitute Ataullah Guerra.
Moss blocked Jones’ right-footer but Guerra hit his left-footed rebound wide, as the New Zealand defenders scrambled to recover. The match was Trinidad and Tobago’s first since their participation at the CONCACAF Gold Cup and the OSN Cup. New Zealand were playing their last international match before the 2014 FIFA World Cup Inter-continental playoff, against Mexico, the fourth-placed team from the CONCACAF Final Round Qualifiers.
Proceeds for the game went towards the Akeem Adams Heart of a Warrior Fund, for the ex-national footballer who suffered a massive heart attack in Hungary recently.