Scholars lift men’s President’s Cup

Scholars International 2016/17 President's Cup Champions.

It was a showdown between two of the top clubs in the Cayman Premier League Wednesday night (1 March), as league leaders Bodden Town FC faced the defending league champions, Scholars International, in the final of the 2016-17 CIFA President’s Cup.

First blood was drawn by Scholars with less than 10 minutes on the clock. Rolly Bodden displayed his skill as one of the most gifted forwards on island when he flicked one past Ramon Sealy to give his side a 1-0 lead in the 9th minute.

Starting with high energy, Scholars were keen to show they were in good form ahead of the Caribbean Club Championships later in March. Rodrick Pearson fired one from distance in the 12th but Sealy got full extension as he dived to his right for an amazing save to keep the margin close.

In the minutes that followed, Bodden Town started creating chances but were unable to find the target and not cause Jermaine Brown to break too much of a sweat in the Scholars goal. A brief moment of drama in the 18th as Theron Wood went to the turf as he pounced on goal just inside the 18-yard box but visiting referee Daneon Parchment of Jamaica ruled the Bodden Town midfielder tripped up his own self and nothing came of it.

Rolly Bodden scored twice for Scholars.

On the other end 20 minutes later, Dwayne Dunk was brought down in front goal by Jahmelie Durrant, who drew a yellow card for the challenge and a penalty was awarded to Scholars. Up stepped Bodden, who easily converted to double his tally and his side’s lead.

Scholars had a 2-0 advantage at the half and Bodden Town had their work cut out for them, especially without the presence of their emotional leader Karl Solomon, who missed the game after picking up an unfortunate second yellow card in the semifinals against Latinos. For what he brings to the team on the pitch, his impact was noted more by his absence.

Bodden Town pulled within a goal after Ricoh Brown was taken down in the box and Wood nailed the penalty kick. 2-1 was the score with 28 minutes left on the clock. A minute later, Sealy rose to the occasion to tip a rocket of a shot from Cesar Farjado over the crossbar and keep the squad in purple in the game.

Bodden Town’s uphill battle became steeper when a defensive lapse allowed the hard-charging Terrence Thomas to get by Sealy after collecting a pass from Pearson, which he easily knocked into the back of the net to give Scholars the 3-1 lead. Pearson made it 4-1 when he fired from distance in the 89th minute and Sealy was unable to get a hold on it as Scholars picked up their second piece of hardware this season after winning the Community Shield in September. caught up with Scholars head coach Collin ‘Dougie’ Rowe for his thoughts on the game. “We played against a strong Bodden Town team. They are technically good, physically they are there and I must say the officiating it was immaculate. It made a big difference in the game also,” he said.

Brown, the Scholars captain, said the outcome was what they expected. “[We were] very confident because we’ve been training right through. We know the team is building and gelling, so we came to get this trophy today,” he said. “Congrats to Bodden Town. They came to play but we came to play better.”

With Bodden Town 12 points ahead of them in the league standings with eight games remaining, this win gives Scholars a glimmer of hope that they might just have a chance to close the gap in their bid to defend the Cayman Premier League crown. “We know they’re going to drop a couple points, so we just have to keep our winning going to get the league trophy,” Brown said.

Meantime, Rowe said he was pleased with the progress the side is showing, especially with the Caribbean Club Championships looming.

“We still have a lot of rough patches in terms of defence line. We played this final without four starting players and I’m still having problems with the back line. We have a lot of work to do there. Going forward in midfield, we still have a little space there where we have to correct but we can do that on the training ground. We’re not 100 percent ready for the tournament but pretty close,” he said.

Scholars begins its Caribbean Club Championships Group D campaign on 14 March against Jamaica’s Portmore United in Puerto Rico.


Scholars Int’l – Rolly Bodden, Jermaine Brown, Christopher Daley, Dwayne Dunk, James Ebanks, Jorge Escobar, Cesar Farjardo, Rex Bush, Damalay Howell, Rodrick Pearson, Terrence Thomas.

Bodden Town FC – Andra Allen, Ricoh Brown, Jahmelie Durrant, Jonathan Ebanks, Kareem James, Kyle Leon, Tevon Levien, Andre McFarlane.



Referee – Daneon Parchment; Assistant Referees – Kedlee Powell, Dwight Cummings; Fourth Official – Marsha Eleweanya; Match Commissioner – Dwayne Ebanks.

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