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Gorean Highley, a member of Joe Public football squad who copped five titles in 2009, is recovering from bullet wounds sustained on Tuesday night in a small-goal football tournament on Bellamy Street, Cocorite Road, Arima.

The 23-year-old striker, who was released by Joe Public a few weeks ago, was reportedly attacked on July 29, at the venue, during the semi- final round of the small-goal tournament.

A colleague who was also fired upon was unhurt and returned to participate in the final. It was reported that, after the match, a gunman approached Highley (also known as “Ratty”) and shot him in his leg, followed by two shots to his chest.

He was rushed to the Dr Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex in Mt Hope for treatment and was discharged on Friday.

Highley, who had a brief stint at W Connection in 2007, was voted the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL) Most Valuable Player for 2004, after leading Arima Senior Comprehensive (now Arima North Secondary) to the finals of both the Big 5 and Intercol competitions — they lost both finals to St Anthony’s College.

He followed in the footsteps of his father Trevor “Mickey Rat” Highley, who was a top player for Memphis in the Arima Soccer League, during the early 1980s.