International Invitational Champs
Blackbirds defeat Lancaster City of the UK
Although their major objective for 2014 has already been achieved; gaining promotion to the Premier Division of Barbados football, the UWI Blackbirds continue to spread their wings in local competition. The talented and highly motivated lads participated in the Kickstart International Invitational and the Powerade Invitational Beach Tournament last week, placing first and second respectively.
In the Kickstart Invitational, UWI fielded a team the Under 24 category. After 3 consecutive draws against Kickstart (0-0), Pro Shottas (1-1) and the Barbados Soccer Academy (2-2) with Daniel Rowe netting all three goals, UWI needed a win in their final round-robin match against Lancaster City from the UK to progress to the finals and were up to the challenge. In that encounter, a Shaquille Layne Free kick and a brilliant strike by Captain Amal Mayers helped UWI edge Lancaster City 2-1. Mayers’ defensive blunder gave Lancaster the equalizer before he redeemed himself late in the game to secure a finals berth.
The final saw UWI and Lancaster meet again in a keenly contested match. UWI dominated play for most of the match but found difficulty in beating the Lancaster custodian. Lancaster created some chances later in the game but none could get past Jamal Clarke between the UWI posts.
Tied 0-0 at the end of regulation time, the match went straight to penalty kicks. UWI triumphed after Clarke saved Lancaster’s second sudden death penalty.
Ramon Manning copped the MVP award.           
In the Powerade Invitational beach tournament held at Brandon’s Beach, UWI made it to the finals of this tournament but were unfortunately narrowly beaten 2-1 to place second overall.