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Under-17 Bajan Belles set for battle in Concacaf Qualifiers

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The BFA's Under-17 Women's team will be looking to qualify for the 2020 Concacaf Championship.

The Barbados Football Association’s Under-17 women’s team are set for battle in this year’s Concacaf Women’s Under-17 Championship Qualifiers. 

The final 15 have been selected and under the guidance of Coach Richard “Juggy” Forde, they are looking to gain entry to next year’s Championships. 

Forde said this team is the previous Under-15 team, and he was confident that the young lasses would be a force to be reckoned with. 

“This is a spill off from the Under-15 tournament and most of the girls would have played in that tournament and are not new to this type of Championship. I believe they are going to do the job and do it well. They are a good bunch of young ladies who work hard, striving to improve the game of Women’s Football, so I think they would do well in this tournament and move on to the next round,” he said. 

Last year, the young Bajan Belles played four matches in the Concacaf Girls’ Under-15 Championship in Bradenton, Florida, which ended in two wins, one draw and a loss, after beating Antigua (3-0), losing 1-0 to Bermuda and drawing with Curacao (0-0) in Zone D. They went on to defeat Cayman Islands (1-0) in a cross-over play-off match, ending with a second-place finish in Division 2. 

Despite playing minus 16-year-old prodigy Caitlin Padmore, who has had a few stints with the senior women's national team, and is currently out injured, Forde said it would be unfair to single out any one player. 

“For me as a coach, I don’t really single out players because I don’t always pick players because of how they play. I try to pick the best team in terms of players who want to win; that is how I choose the best 11 on the night in question. 

“I think that everybody has their role to play, so to single out one person and not the others, would not be fair on the other players who also work hard,” he said of the team, who is being captained once again by 14-year-old Olianna Bishop. 

The Bajan lasses have been drawn in Group C and will face Belize, St Kitts and Nevis and the US Virgin Islands on August 21, 23 and 25 respectively at the Wildey Turf. 

All matches begin at 7 p.m. and admission to the facility is $5. 

Matches will be played in a round-robin format, with the winner of each group advancing to the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Under-17 Championship. 

Team: Olianna Bishop (captain), Lisa Harding, Jamesha Stanford, Tanija Maughn, Keinelle Johnson, Zadana Belle, Tori Belle, Keidasha Thomas, Amber Soudatt-Sealy, Alana Boyce, Daphne Watson-James, Ryah Dates, Rayna Cummings, Britnee Stanford, Andrenique Straker, Asha Stevenson, Jessie Robinson, Kerisha Catlyn. 

Team Officials: Ahmed Mohamed (Technical Director), Richard Forde (Coach), Shanice Stevenson (Assistant Coach), Christieanea Parris (Manager) and Richard Bynoe (Goalkeeper Coach).

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