DEFEND THE LAND!

first_imgGuyana battle Trinidad today in RAN 15s South Zone FinalONE of the biggest rivalries in Rugby within the Caribbean will take centre stage today at the St Stanislaus College ground, Carifesta Avenue, when Guyana do battle against Trinidad and Tobago in the final of the Rugby Americas North (RAN) 15s South Zone Final. Kick-off time 16:00hrs.Brendan O’Farrell, Trinidad and Tobago’s head coach, told Chronicle Sport yesterday that his side is anxiously anticipating the encounter today with Guyana, especially since the ‘Soca Ruggers have been beaten in their last two encounters.Guyana, more popularly known as the ‘Green Machine’ are acknowledged by many as the most-feared Rugby team in the Caribbean, more so in the game’s shortest version – sevens.However, in the 15s format, Guyana have made some historical strides, with their victory 30-27 against the USA (South) in 2014, to win their maiden NACRA (now known as RAN) 15s title in Atlanta – their biggest achievement yet.In both 7s and 15s, Trinidad remain Guyana’s toughest opposition. In last year’s Ran South Zone 15s final, Guyana prevailed 23-18 over Trinidad, but this time around O’Farrell is hoping for a different result.“Guyana have had the upper hand on us over the last couple of years. We know each other very well and on the day it’s who want it the most,” O’Farrell said, adding, “Both teams would have prepared as well as they can, but at the end of the day it’s who want it the most.”Despite being tough in their defence, Guyana outscore their opposition using their quickness on the wings, with former national Patrick King and West Indies skipper Claudius Butts doing the damage; but O’Farrell pointed out that adjustments will be made to not only stop the Guyanese from using their advantage.(But also) “You have to try and negate the strength of the team. Fortunately, we have quite a few of them playing in Trinidad so we’re familiar with them,” the Trinidad and Tobago head coach said.Asked about the possibility of winning and what it will mean for Rugby on his Island, O’Farrell pointed out, “The win will do well for us in Trinidad. Guyana have won the Southern Championship for the last two years and it will be nice to take the trophy back to Trinidad and move on to play the bigger countries.”Meanwhile, with a clash against Mexico (RAN’s North Zone Champions) on the horizon, Guyana’s captain Ryan Gonsalves is hoping to replicate their performance against the Trinidadians last year and urged all to come out and support his side.It was not all smooth sailing for the Guyanese side, who only on Thursday were able to secure a venue for the game, since their usual battleground, the National Park, was deemed unplayable because of the heavy rainfall experienced over the last couple of days.The team had to deal with their usual lack of support from both Government and corporate Guyana; something Gonsalves is “challenging”.“It is challenging and frustrating to see such a good team, playing this good all the years, being faced with these difficulties year in, year out. It is about time someone from the Government put his/her foot forward, or major sponsors help us out,” Gonsalves said.“It is always a challenge for any team playing home or aboard. We are trying to see how we can leave the off-field stuff from affecting us and try to focus on today’s game,” Gonsalves pointed out.But despite the challenges, Gonsalves is adamant that the ‘Green Machine’ will be ready for today’s game both mentally and physically.“We are pretty ready for them. We have been working on certain tactics to work the big guys out and see how long they can last. We will be very mobile and attack them rather than sit and wait for them to come to us.”Banks DIH, a long-time supporter of the Guyana Rugby Football Union (GRFU), will be partnering with the Union through its world famous Banks Beer brand, for today’s clash.Communications Manager Troy Peters pointed out that the company is more than happy to continue its alliance with the GRFU and also made a call for the public to support the team.last_img read more