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Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Bahrain 0-1 Trinidad & Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago reached the World Cup finals for the first time in their history after beating Bahrain. Bahrain had secured a 1-1 draw in the Caribbean on Saturday, but were outplayed in the play-off's second leg. Wrexham's giant defender Dennis Lawrence scored the goal, outjumping the Bahrain defence to powerfully head in a Dwight Yorke corner on 49 minutes. In the closing stages Russell Latapy rattled the bar for Trinidad, while Hussain Ali Baba was red-carded.

In a scrappy first-half Bahrain keeper Ali Hassan made a brave save, throwing himself at Stern John's feet, after the on-loan Derby striker broke clear. Bahrain struggled throughout against a physically stronger Trinidad team, with the home side's best chance stemming from Kelvin Jack's misjudgment in coming for a high ball five minutes before the interval. The Trinidad keeper was rescued by Rangers defender Marvin Andrews who cleared the danger.

After Lawrence's goal Ahmed Hassan's low curling free-kick hit the side-netting, though Jack had the shot covered. In chaotic scenes at the end Ali Baba was dismissed after referee Oscar Ruiz was man-handled. Moments after the sending off Jack made up for his earlier eccentric keeping when he spectacualrly tipped over the bar Talal Yusuf's shot. With a population of just a one million Trinidad will be the least populated country taking part in the 2006 finals in Germany. Bahrain had also been trying to reach their first-ever World Cup after having come through two Asian qualifying rounds and surviving a close and controversial playoff against Uzbekistan to reach the Asian/CONCACAF play-off.
Source: BBC Sport

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