Turks & Caicos Islands Youth National Football Teams Make History
It was a surge of adrenaline as the TCI Boys Under-15 and Girls Under-14 National Football Teams achieved historic milestones in the 2019 editions of the Concacaf Boys Under-15 Championship (Bradenton) and CFU Girls Under-14 Challenge Series (Puerto Rico). It is the first time that any youth team from the Turks & Caicos Islands had won an international football match officially sanctioned by CFU, Concacaf or FIFA.
The Under-15 Boys team, captained by Michael Saunders, conquered St. Martin with a score of 3-1 on August 5th. In this match, Dale Taylor scored the first goal with assist from Corey Williams. Watson Jean-Louis scored the second goal with a long-range volley, and Corey Williams scored the third goal with a near post header from a Callum Park Corner. In total, the team scored four goals collectively throughout the span of the competition. Charlie Hawkins scored the team’s fourth goal in a match against Dominica, on August 6th. The Turks & Caicos Islands was placed in Division 3, Group J, along with St. Martin, Dominica, British Virgin Islands, and Montserrat.
Continuing the streak of improvement in our Youth Programme, the Under-14 Girls, captained by Jodee Harvey, were overwhelmed with emotion as they walked away with a 3rd place title at the end of the CFU Girls U-14 Challenge Series Group phase. The team placed third in Group 3 of the competition, which included the host Puerto Rico, Bonaire, Haiti and Anguilla. In a very competitive game against Bonaire, the girls triumphed by a score of 3-2 on August 9th. In this particular match, Irener Moline scored the first goal, Callie Hall scored the second goal, and Rosaria Talbot scored the third goal. Syniah Forbes-Chambers brought the team’s goal accumulation to four in a match against Anguilla on August 13th; ending with a score of 1-1, draw.
General Secretary Oliver Smith commented, “the achievements in these Youth International Tournaments are the result of the upgrades in our Technical Department coupled with the hard work and commitment of our young players. The TCIFA’s main objective is to build our National Teams from the ground up and as such we are investing resources into our grassroots and Elite Youth Programs in order to achieve this. We would like to thank not only our Coaches, Players and Volunteers, but the parents who make the daily sacrifice in doing what is necessary to get the players to the training sessions and more significantly, trusting us with their talented children”