Haiti and Trinidad draw in Caribbean Cup
ST. JOHN'S, Antigua -- In a meeting of past champions, Haiti and Trinidad & Tobago kicked-off the Caribbean Cup finals with 0-0 Group A draw at the Antigua Recreation Ground on Friday. Antigua and Barbuda will face the Dominican Republic in the second game of the doubleheader.

The two regional football giants were both on the defensive from the opening whistle. It was clear that neither side wanted to risk an early defeat in what is expected to be a tightly contested group.

In a tale of two halves, Haiti held a slight edge in the first 45 minutes, while the Soca Warriors were more assertive in the second half. Key stops by both goalkeepers, however, and some wayward shooting, ensured a goalless result.

Trinidad's Atullah Guerra used every inch of his long frame in the 20th minute to rise over the Haitian defense and head the ball towards goal only to be denied by the outstretched arm of Jhony Placide.

Haiti's best chance to take the lead came on the edge of halftime, when Fritznel Louis spun from 25 yards and fired a shot just to the right of Trinidadian keeper and captain Jan Michael Williams.

A few minutes earlier, a close-range attempt by Pascal Millien flashed just inches high of the Trinidad goal.

Trinidad, which last won the Caribbean Cup in 2001, played with increased urgency in the second half and moved Hughton Hector into a more attacking role. The tactical adjustment almost paid dividends in the 51st minute, but Placide pulled off a diving save after the 28-year-old midfielder slipped past his mark.

Hughton combined well with Aubrey David to put pressure on the Haitian defense, while second-half substitute Lester Peltier gave Trinidad another weapon upfront, but they could not find the back of the net.

Next up for Haiti is a meeting against the Dominican Republic on Sunday, while Trinidad meets Antigua the same day.