Bodden Town, Elite to renew rivalry in Charity Shield

Raul Rodriguez and Kyle Leon play important roles for their respective sides.

The 2017-18 Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) season kicks off Sunday, 7 October with Bodden Town Football Club and Elite Sports Club squaring off in the Men’s Charity Shield starting at 7:00 p.m. at the Annex.

Last season’s Cayman Premier League and Men’s FA Cup champions, Bodden Town FC, will be looking to pick up where they left off in a campaign that saw them go on an unbeaten for about half of the season. They came up short in picking up three pieces of hardware, when they lost to Scholars International in the President’s Cup.

Also on the pitch will be an Elite SC side eager to show they could have posed a tougher challenge to the eventual, had it not been for a slew of injuries to key players at different times during the season.

Bodden Town won two of the three league meetings last season, including an opening week showdown at the Ed Bush Sports Complex that saw substitute Andra Allen scoring in the 75th minute to break a 1-1 deadlock with the winning goal.

Elite got their revenge on 27 November, when they blanked their rivals 3-0 thanks to goals from Christopher Reeves, Miguel Simms and Dwayne Wright.

Theron Wood scored twice in BTFC’s 4-2 win on 12 March.

The final bragging rights went to Coach Elbert McLean’s squad as they held off Greg Ebanks’ side 4-2 at the Haig Bodden Sports Complex. Theron Wood scored twice for Bodden Town, with other goals coming from Karl Solomon and Casey McLaughlin. Reeves and Abijah Rivers scored for Elite.

At the end of the end of the season, Bodden Town enjoyed an 11-point lead over their rivals, winning 15 of their 21 league games, with two draws and four losses. They also sported one of the stingiest defences, surrendering 21 goals, bettered only by third-placed Scholars International with 16.

Elite’s guys brought the fireworks last season with the most potent offence in the league, scoring 39 goals – six more than Bodden Town with 33. Their defence was no slouch either. Their 24 goals allowed was the third lowest behind Bodden Town and Scholars. The top goal difference was theirs at +15.

Both will look to maintain good form in the upcoming campaign and represent well overseas, having secured spots in the Caribbean Club Championships and Elite will look to improve on their showing when they were dominated by opponents from the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Antigua & Barbuda.

The regular season is scheduled to kick off a week after the Charity Shield.

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