Suriname wasted a half dozen clear-cut and easy chances in the first half on the way to a 1-0 victory over St Vincent & the Grenadines yesterday in their Caribbean Cup Group Eight semi-final qualifier at the Dwight Yorke Stadium, Bacolet, Tobago.
The result eliminated both teams from next months' Caribbean Cup Finals, even before the group-deciding match between Cuba and Trinidad and Tobago, who were already on four points.
Suriname ended third on three points, and SVG last on two.
It could have been over by the end of the first half. Suriname held a 1-0 lead, when goalkeeper and captain Ronny Aloema converted a penalty in the 42nd minute after SVG defender Dorren Hamlet felled striker Giovanni Drenthe on the left side of the penalty box.
But Suriname should have long sailed away with the match by then.
By far the better side technically, Suriname breached the SVG defence many times, but regularity strikers Giovanni Waal, Drenthe and Wilfred Galimo either hit wide or straight to the SVG keeper.
Suriname eventually had the ball in the net a second time, two minutes after going ahead. As several of his teammates had done before, Giovanni Alleyne ran clear down the centre of the SVG penalty area where he was challenged by keeper Kenyan Lynch. As the opposing players collided, the loose ball was put in the SVG net, but the goal was disallowed for a foul on the goalie.
St Vincent & the Grenadine looked good for just the first 10 minutes when their pacey twin strikers, Caledonia AIA winger Cornelius Stewart and Myron Samuel caused a few anxious moments.
Having drawn their opening matches against Cuba and T&T, SVG still had a chance to qualify for next month's finals. But, they badly needed to reorganise in the second half.
But it was more of the same in the second period.