Junior Bula boys go down to Solomon Islands

Action from the tri-nation friendly match between the DIgicel Junior Bula Boys and Solomon Islands. Picture: FIJI FA

THE Ronil Lal-coached Digicel Junior Bula Boys went down 1-4 to the Solomon Islands in the Tri-Nations FIFA International Friendlies at Churchill Park in Lautoka yesterday.

The home team scored first in the 30th minute through midfielder Abudullah Aiyas who plies his trade with semi-professional club Bonnyrigg White Eagles in Sydney, Australia.

The Junior Bula Boys failed to double their lead in the 38th minute after Junior Dekedeke missed a penalty. Adrian Mara brought the visitors back in the match, equalising on the stroke of halftime.

The teams went into the breather locked 1-all. The Felipe Vega-Arango-coached Solomon Islands side started the second spell on a high note with William Komasi scoring the second goal in the 46th minute.

Moments later the visitors went up 3-1 after Mohammed Mekawir scored from a spot kick. Bobby Leslie sealed the win for the Solomon Islanders in the 87th minute after the Junior Bula Boys failed to clear the ball from their 18-yard box.

Junior Bula Boys coach Lal said they went up against tough opposition. He said they had learnt a lot of lessons from the fixture. “We are not talking about the loss but the things that we will need to work on from here on,” Lal said.

“That is what was shown and what we are taking away from this game. We need to organise our defending transitions.

“The Solomon Islands technical department was good, making crucial changes in the second half which suited them and changed the complexion of the match. Playing against a senior and stronger team is always good for our younger boys.”

The Junior Bula Boys will take on the Fiji Bula Boys (senior) side at the Fiji Football Association Academy ground in Ba this Thursday.

The side is using the Tri-Nations matches as part of their preparations for the FIFA Under-20 World Cup which starts in Indonesia in May. Lal said they needed to get stronger for the next fixture.

“The boys still need to work on their fitness and there are many other areas that we need to work on,” he said. “We have time on our hands to improve in those areas before we name the final squad to travel to Indonesia.

“I think as we play more games, the boys will improve in their respective departments.”

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