Bell puts in strong-arm show after fracture – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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Bell puts in strong-arm show after fracture

Bermuda Under-20 goalkeeper Detre Bell marked his return from injury with an outstanding display in the 1-1 draw with Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday.

The North Village shot-stopper made a series of saves that proved to be a major factor in the young Gombey Warriors salvaging something from their highly entertaining Concacaf Under-20 Championship opener at the Estadio Ricardo Saprissa.

“We got off the mark with a good point,” Bell said. “We wanted more than one and should have got three, but it shows that we can play.

“For me, it was just like another game, even though I was a little nervous before the game just coming back into the team. But five minutes into the game I started to get my rhythm and the feel of the game and everything just came back to me.

“I think the last few minutes of the game were very tense because both teams wanted to score — especially when Trinidad got those two free kicks.

“I was nervous from the first one that hit the woodwork and when I saw they got a second free kick my heart dropped — and that was at a very crucial time.

“It was very tense especially after losing both of our centre backs.

“But Liam [Bermuda captain Liam Evans] and Milan [joint vice-captain Kacy — Milan Butterfield] came in strong and did what they had to do.”

Sunday's hard-fought match was Bell's first appearance at any level since fracturing his arm in December while playing for North Village in a Player Development League match.

“I fractured my arm in the Player Development League final against Dandy Town,” he explained. “One of their strikers ran into my arm and fractured it.”

The injury left Bell's hopes of representing his country in Costa Rica hanging in the balance.

“It was a long recovery,” he said. “I did a lot of rehab early mornings and nights. It was a lot of work, but it's good to be back.”

Bell and his team-mates have made history as members of Bermuda's first squad to appear at the Concacaf Under-20 Championship — the final stage of 2017 Under-20 World Cup qualifiers.

“It feels good to make history,” Bell said. “A lot of people doubted us. But we fought together and stuck together like a family, and that's what brought us to this round.

“I don't think people understand how competitive our team is and how much we love each other and are willing to work hard for each other.”

Football is part of Bell's DNA. He is the son of late Hotels International defender Derek Bell, while his sister Cheyra has captained the Bermuda women's team and brother Tahj plays is the North Village goalkeeper.

“I always think about my pops before a game,” Bell said. “I have a chain that he used to wear that I kiss before every game and I just know that he is watching over me every game.

“I feel that he helps to get me through my games and I dedicate all of my performances to my pops.”

Keeping the faith: Bell, who has football in his DNA, is happy to have made history with the young Gombey Warriors (Photograph by Colin Thompson)

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Published February 22, 2017 at 8:00 am (Updated February 21, 2017 at 10:29 pm)

Bell puts in strong-arm show after fracture

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