Boyles aiming to build on positives in semi-final tie – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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Boyles aiming to build on positives in semi-final tie

Devarr Boyles, the Dandy Town coach, said he is encouraged by the progress his team has made in recent weeks ahead of tomorrow's Friendship Trophy semi-final clash with Boulevard at Devonshire Recreation Club.

Town made a poor start to the season but have found their footing lately thanks largely to an inspiring 2-0 upset over Premier Division champions PHC Zebras earlier this month.

“The group we have now have a different mentality than we had six weeks ago,” Boyles said. “We've found ways to stay in games and get a result even when we're not playing well.”

Town were not at their best in their previous outing in the Premier Division against high-flying X-Roads at St John's Field but still managed to come away with a 1-0 win after pouncing on a defensive error.

“Typically earlier in the year we would've lost that game,” Boyles added. “We were just on the right side of an error and capitalised.”

Boyles hopes his team can extend their good run of form when they come up against a Boulevard side tomorrow that won the only meeting between the two crosstown rivals 3-2 in a league encounter at St John's Field back in October.

“We're hoping that we can improve our position and that's to get to a final,” the former Town and Bermuda midfielder said.

“We are just happy to be in the competition to get more games and to build continuity with the group.

“Any games we get, enhances our opportunities to keep the group intact over the Christmas period because when we come back in January it's about getting off to a good start so we can position ourselves better in the league.”

Town's No 1 goalkeeper Treadwell Gibbons Jr has been ruled out with a knee injury while captain and former Boulevard player Angelo Simmons, who scored the winner against X-Roads, remains doubtful with a sprained ankle.

Tomorrow's Friendship Trophy semi-final starts at 2.30pm and will be preceded by the First Division Shield semi-final encounter between unbeaten rivals Somerset Eagles and Southampton Rangers to commence at noon.

n Meanwhile, Young Men's Social Club and PHC, the third placed teams from groups A and B, will battle tonight at Goose Gosling Field (8.00) in a playoff match to determine the final team for the Expansion League Festive Tournament quarter-finals next week.

The tournament, which will feature some players abroad in school, features nine teams in three groups, but to get to eight for the quarters, one of the teams will have to be eliminated. It was determined beforehand that all three teams in group C — Somerset, the defending champions, Devonshire Cougars and Boulevard — would advance, leaving the third-placed teams from the other two groups to fight for the remaining spot.

Social Club lost both their group matches, 2-0 to Dandy Town and 6-0 to Devonshire Colts who won the group, the only team to finish with two wins in the three groups. Colts will play X-Roads, the second team in group B, next Thursday at the BFA field (6.45) in the first of the four quarter-final matches.

Boulevard will play either PHC or Social Club in the second match at BFA field at 9pm. The other two matches will be at Goose Gosling Field where Dandy Town will play Somerset, winners of group C, at 6.45 and Devonshire Cougars will meet North Village, the group B winners, at 9.00.

The two semi-finals will take place on Sunday, December 30 at Goose Gosling at 12.30pm and 3pm with the final scheduled for Wednesday, January 2 at 8pm at the same venue.

Somerset won last year's final when brothers Jaz and Jaden Ratteray-Smith scored in each half in their 2-1 win over BAA at Goose Gosling Field.

Kane Critchlow of BAA surges forward from midfield as Somerset's Tego Bean closes in at Goose Gosling Field during last season's Expansion League final which Somerset won 2-1 (Photograph by Lawrence Trott)

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Published December 22, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated December 21, 2018 at 10:12 pm)

Boyles aiming to build on positives in semi-final tie

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