BVI to face St. Lucia on Sunday in second
leg of World Cup qualifier
BY DEAN GREENAWAY
The BVI will face St. Lucia on Sunday in the away leg of their World Cup
qualifying series. The team is coming off last weekend's 4-0 loss to St.
Kitts coupled with a 4-2 victory over the Newton Club team.
Technical director Michael Tulloch said the games in St. Kitts were not a
success in terms of what he was looking for. "Our preparations have been
hampered over the last month. We haven't been able to play on the full
field on the A. O. Shirley Recreation Grounds," he noted. "It takes away
something from the team, our ability and the big field football that we
were able to have for the first leg. We haven't been able prepare that
extensively and I think that played a part."
The center of the field was dug up to prepare the pitch for the BVI Cricket
Association league following last month's 1-0 loss to St. Lucia. Tulloch
who comes from a football background in Jamaica, said there's no emphasis
on football here even with the team in World Cup competition. Cricket he
said is given a higher priority than football. "One evening we used the
field and people were quarreling that we mashed up their field," Tulloch
explained. "I wanted to stay away from the quarreling and disturbances so I
haven't been able to use the field. But, I'm very optimistic. However, it
boils down to being mental at this stage. If the players are willing to
work hard and be disciplined in the formation and mark the people as they
should, I think we could have a good game, not necessarily as a must win.
But, if we play very good in terms of our mental approach, I know we can win."
Tulloch said he has however been receiving positive feedback on his work.
"I that if I get the support from management and players, I can do a very
good job," Tulloch said. Following Sunday's match, Tulloch who was on a
three month stint, will take a break to spend time with family in Jamaica.
"I'll come back in the next two to three weeks to see where it goes from
there," he said. "It would be a waste for me to have been here for three
months and made such and impact and then all of that just goes through the
door. I'm hoping that good sense will prevail and the BVI Football
Association will try and prolong with me and see if I can assist in
developing the sport to a greater level."
Reflecting on his experience with the BVI team, Tulloch there were
disappointments. "I came here expecting that I'll be working with a
professional organization in terms of the support I would get and the
background support. I haven't been able to get that. I've actually been
trying to ring them in terms of the things I want to get implemented so
that soccer can have the standard I would be expecting at this level."
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