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Lightbourne positive despite Antigua defeat

Kyle Lightbourne was pleased with his centre backs despite conceding three goals

Bermuda coach Kyle Lightbourne saw some positives in the 3-2 defeat by Antigua on Wednesday night at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, praising defenders Daren Usher, Na-eem Griffith and Jaylon Bather for their performances.

“Even though we conceded three goals I’m happy with the way our centre backs Jaylon and Na’eem played,” Lightbourne said after the match. “They stood up to the physical challenge.

“Daren Usher played well on his debut and did well to get up and down the park,” Lightbourne said of the right back, who was one of three PHC Zebras players in the starting XI before club-mates Cecoy Robinson and Marco Warren came on as second-half substitutes.

“We did all the hard work and then gave them two goals,” Lightbourne said of the two second-half goals that gave Antigua a 3-1 lead before captain Reggie Lambe pulled it back to 3-2 with 20 minutes remaining.

“After going down 3-1 we got back in the game with Reggie scoring and then Justin Donawa hit the post. I’m disappointed we didn’t win the game, we can be better in the final third of the opposing half. We were disappointed to concede after being in possession, but we kept our heads high and were positive despite the loss.”

Bermuda will look to bounce back with a good performance against Barbados on Sunday, when there are expected to be some changes to the starting team, with both Warren and Robinson likely to be given a start.

Also starting in defence against Antigua were Jahquil Hill in goal and Casey Castle at left back, while the midfield contained Roger Lee, Donte Brangman and Zeiko Lewis.

“A lot of things that we talked about and worked on came out in the game,” Lightbourne said. “We had more of the possession but possession doesn’t win games.

“In the balance of the game, I thought a draw would have been a fair result. I’m disappointed but we do get to play again right away.

“Our formation of 4-3-3 caused them some problems. They really didn’t come to grips with the way we were playing. We started the second half a bit on top and then they had a spell and scored two goals. But we didn’t let our heads drop.”

The team flew to Miami yesterday and will arrive in Barbados today to prepare for Sunday’s match.

• Masters Knockout Cup semi-finals will be played on Sunday at Bernard Park. PHC Raiders, the defending champions, will meet Hamilton Parish in the 3pm opening match with North Village taking on St George’s Stallions at 5.

Expansion KO semi-finals will be played next Tuesday and Wednesday at the BFA Field starting at 8.30pm. Dandy Town will meet the winner of Hamilton Parish and Somerset Trojans in the Tuesday match, before Devonshire Cougars play Somerset Eagles the following night.