Tommy’s dozen as Old Road improve

The biggest news coming out of the weekend of football at the ARG is simple it’s more difficult for Lime Old Road to lose the 2012 premier division title than to win it.

That though was not the only news.

Hospitality Services Sea View Farm hammered La Bussola Willikies 4-1 and Champion Footwear Green bay Hoppers beat Cool & Smooth Empire 2-0 on the Grays Green Derby.

Also news worthy is the fact that Special Security Services All Saints United and defending champions Asot’s Arcade Parham stumbled.

Old Road beat Sugar Ridge Sap 2-0 on Saturday while Special Security Services All Saints United and Asot’s Arcade Parham drew 0-0 on Sunday.

Now, Old Road on 33 points is nine points clear of United at the top of the standings with a commanding hold on the premier division title.

Stephan “Tommy” Smith scored twice as Lime Old Road improved its lead on the premiership with a 2-0 win over Sugar Ridge Sap in the feature game on Saturday.

His two strikes took his tally to a league-leading 12 goals as Old Road got to 33 points and clearly in sight of its first national championship.

Smith’s second strike, one from the top shelf, along with him topping the league has once again started the debate about his place as the premier striker for the national team as opposed to Peter Big Pete” Byers.

That debate will continue until June when Antigua & Barbuda play its first game in the 2014 FIFA World Cup semi final qualifiers, especially taking into consideration that Byers is scoreless in four games.

Sap and Byers were expected to cause Old Road to falter but in the end Sap just did not have what it will take to keep Old Road from winning the title.

But neither Sap nor Byers did not show up so Old Road, led by Smith took full advantage and added two points to their lead at the top of the table.

Old Road came into the weekend with a seven point lead over United, won their game and waited for what happened on Sunday.

It was a favourable ending, at least for Old Road.

Earlier in the day Bassa and bottom of the table team Pigotts Bullets played to a 2-2 draw as Bullets look to climb out of the cellar.

Bassa scored early, a fifth minute goal by Lennox “Fox” Julian but Bullets never gave hope and kept the score line at 1-0 going into the break.

Twelve minutes after intermission Bullets equalize.

Bryan Edwards hit past his own keeper as Bullets threatened on attack.

Deshawn Browne gave Bassa the lead once more twelve minutes after Bullets equalizer.

It seemed like Bullets was on its way to another antagonizing defeat but in extra time Vivian Richards found his way into the Bassa goal as Bullets gained a valuable point.

Bullets are now two points behind Empire after the former 14-time champions drew nil-all with Sap on Wednesday.

Well, Empire was back in action on Sunday when they took on Hoppers in game two of a triple header.

In the opening encounter Farm demoralized Willikies to improve to 18 points and probably out of the relegation zone.

While beating Willikies is not surprising, the score line certainly was a shocker.

It was an important victory for Farm over a team that has been touted as the most improved team in the premier division.

Perhaps that accolade was granted too early for Farm has a case for that honour.

That victory is extremely significant for a number of reasons, chief among them showcasing the talents of new coach Janil “Board” Simon.

The coach came in after Veron “Epilus” Edwards left the club after some three games and it was the belief of many that Simon would be a failure at Farm and the team would be relegated.

This latest win suggests that Simon does have what it takes to keep his spot in the premiership.

Empire may be the team of Grays Green taking into consideration its past championships as opposed to Hoppers never winning the title.

In recent times however, the ‘titleless’ Hoppers has controlled that match up and on Sunday, Hoppers beat Empire once again.

United and Parham were preseason were supposed to be the teams to keep Old Road from winning the cup but both teams have lost their way.

The race may be for second place as well as the race out of the relegation zone as Old Road appears to have the Cup locked.