El Salvador and Trinidad and Tobago played out a 2-2 draw yesterday as the final phase of qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ got underway in the North, Central America and Caribbean region. Two goals from Osael Romero in the 79th and 90th minutes earned the draw for the hosts after Trinidad and Tobago took a 2-0 lead in the first half.

Carlos Edwards opened the scoring for the visitors in the seventh minute, firing a shot from outside the area that eluded goalkeeper Juan Jose Gomez. Veteran Dwight Yorke doubled the margin in the 27th, converting a penalty resulting from Luis Hernandez's foul on Stern John.

El Salvador's attempts to pull back were frustrated by T&T keeper Clayton Ince until 11 minutes from time when Romero scored with a free-kick from just outside the area. Romero stamped himself the hero for the hosts with his equaliser in injury time.

The six-nation final round of qualifying for the region also includes the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica and Honduras. The top three teams from the competition will advance directly to the FIFA World Cup finals in South Africa, while the fourth will play off for a berth against a team from South America.