Jamaica leaves it late to draw Costa Rica
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Costa Rica and home Jamaica (file photo) tied 1-1 in a World Cup qualifier on September 10, 2013, played at Independence Park in Kingston. (Photo: Imagenes en Costa Rica)

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Costa Rica moved one step closer to a place at next year’s World Cup finals with a 1-1 draw against host Jamaica on Tuesday at Independence Park. 

The Ticos now sit second in the CONCACAF Hexagonal table, one point behind the United States, which beat Mexico, 2-0.  Both countries can seal qualification to Brazil 2014 if Panama loses or draws against Honduras later in the evening.

Randall Brenes put the visitors ahead in 75th minute, when Jamaica goalkeeper Richard McCallum – who was playing in place of the suspended Donovan Ricketts – made a weak pass out of his box on the ground.  The Cartagines forward raced to the ball, dribbled into the left-side of the box and struck a right-footed shot that hit the near post and astonishingly spun over the line.  It was his third career qualifying goal.

Just when the Costa Ricans appeared to have the win in hand, Jermaine Anderson leveled the score two minutes into second-half stoppage time.  He lunged near the far post at a long ball delivered from the left side and somehow managed to direct it around Costa Rica goalkeeper Patrick Pemberton.

Costa Rica, which beat the United States 3-1 at home on Friday, extended its unbeaten streak in World Cup Qualifying against Jamaica to four consecutive games.  The Reggae Boyz have only one win in nine all-time meetings between the two in the competition.