Now we tell you that illegal gun violence struck in the national football community in the wee hours of yesterday morning as Trinidad and Tobago’s 27-year-old international player and North East Stars Pro League playmaker Keron “Ball Pest” Cummings was confirmed as shot outside his home in Diego Martin after returning from a boat cruise with his girlfriend.
Cummings who was just on Christmas Eve this past Thursday named by national coach Stephen Hart to continue national duty in a squad of 23 to prepare for the January 8th Copa America qualifier against Haiti in Panama was said to have been shot by a masked man in his right leg. He is also reported to have suffered a broken thigh bone.
Sources say robbery and/or jealousy may have been the motive behind the shooting of the footballer who usually sports several gold chains and an oversize medallion.
Cummings’s injuries are reported not to be life-threatening and he is expected to undergo surgery at hospital today.
He therefore misses out on today’s first training session with the squad who are also taking up camp at a guest house in Central Trinidad before leaving for Panama next week.
Cummings has had14 international appearances for Trinidad and Tobago and has scored three goals, two of them in Trinidad and Tobago’s 4-all draw with CONCACAF rivals Mexico in mid-year Gold Cup action in the United States. His other goal was also against Mexico.
Cummings last featured in Trinidad and Tobago’s Russia 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Guatemala and the United States last month.
The midfielder was being courted by USA’s Major League Soccer club Orlando City for the 2016 season but will have to wait out now.
Up to last night police had made no headway in arrest of the assailant and the search continues. The assailant is also said to be from the West Trinidad area and is a known bandit.
The TT team coach is to now name a replacement for Cummings on the training squad.
Winner of the January 8th match qualifies to play in the 2016 Copa America centennial tournament to be played in the United States in mid-year, Essentially a tournament featuring South America’s cast of powerhouse teams like Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, and Paraguay, the Copa America is celebrating 100 years in 2016 and organizers have offered invitations to CONCACAF member teams to be part of the competition for the first time.