St Lucia opened the 2013 Windward Islands Football Tournament by beating the home side St Vincent & the Grenadines 2-0 Sunday night at Victoria Park. More importantly, a victory Tuesday evening against Grenada would give St Lucia the title.
In Sunday’s game, 19 year-old Northern United centre forward, Eden Charles scored in the 21st minute to put the visitors up a goal, his second international goal in six appearances. W Connection defender Pernal Williams, 21 years old, converted in the 90th minute to seal the win.
After a string of poor results against their immediate neighbours, St Lucia beat St Vincent & the Grenadines last year in Gros Islet, in the opening round of the Caribbean Cup.
St Lucia is ranked 152 in the world and 23rd in CONCACAF, the Confederation of North and Central America and Caribbean. St Vincent & the Grenadines is ranked 121, 16th in CONCACAF.
According to a pre-tournament release from the St Lucia Football Association (SLFA), the team selected for this competition was one of the youngest fielded in some time, with the bulk of players below the age of 25.
The tournament continued with a further challenge for the young St Lucians, under the guidance of coach Francis “Baba” Lastic, when they faced off against Grenada on Tuesday. Grenada is ranked 141 in the World.
This tournament is the first time a Windward Islands competition has been held since 2001. The Commonwealth of Dominica withdrew on Friday, after a vehicular accident claimed the lives of two members of the national team and left a third in serious condition in hospital.