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Tri-nation series: Mauritius, St Kitts & Nevis in battle of island nations

Mauritius will take on St Kitts & Nevis in the second game of the tri-nation series at the Andheri Sports Complex.

football Updated: Aug 21, 2017 22:08 IST
Sarthak Bal
Sarthak Bal
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Mauritius national football team,St Kitts & Nevis national football team,Tri-Nation Cup
Mauritius lost narrowly to India and will have a chance to make amends against St Kitts and Nevis. (AIFF)

Following a 1-2 defeat at the hands of hosts India, Mauritius will take on St Kitts & Nevis in the second game of the tri-nation series at the Andheri Sports Complex. The island nations will face-off for the first time on Tuesday.

Ranked 160th by Fifa, Mauritius put up a spirited fight against 97th ranked India, even registering the opening goal of the tournament 14 minutes into the match. Mauritian winger Joseph Kevin was their best player on the night, troubling the Indian full-backs in patches through the 90 minutes.

In fact, their ball distribution even earned praise from India coach Stephen Constantine after the game.

“They (Mauritius) perhaps could have played a little bit better but they did move the ball very well. They deserved the goal and I feel we were fortunate to get the equaliser when we did,” said Constantine.

The African nation’s Brazilian coach Francisco Filho said his side would play the same brand of aggressive football on Tuesday.

St Kitts & Nevis, who undertook a long journey from the Caribbean, are ranked 125th, and head coach Passy Jacques said their intent was to win the tournament.

“You don’t travel around the world only to compete, but not win. Obviously, our priority is to win. First, we will try to conquer Mauritius and then win the game against India. We’ll take one game at a time,” Jacques told www.the-aiff.com.

“You don’t get the opportunity like this every day. The challenge lies in playing outside our continent, our comfort zone. The character of the players will be significant,” he added.

The two-island country comes into the tournament on the back of heavy defeats against Armenia (5-0) on June 4 and Georgia (3-0) on June 7. Their last victory came in a 2-1 triumph over Barbados in May.

First Published: Aug 21, 2017 22:08 IST