Old Boys battle to tight victory
Old Boys vs Waihopai – Waverley Park 21st April
Terrible conditions greeted the teams for this one with rain and a strengthening westerly to contend with. The pitch was reasonably heavy after a long week of rain but significantly better than the previous week at the crater field – O’Rorke Park.
School holidays and injuries had decimated both Div1 and DG’s squads with Coaches Grant and Reuben having to tinker with the team right up to kickoff.
It was a reasonably scratchy opening to the match with neither side really asserting any dominance and the conditions making for some poor control. Old Boys perhaps guilty of trying to overplay it at times. Recent signing Kyle was the first on the scoreboard from our first good opportunity when he slotted home past the keeper 1:1.
The home team failing to stretch the lead with Waihopai having some good moments. Mitchell was called into action for a double save to deny a 1:1 opportunity however Waihopai weren’t to be denied five minutes from half time when they broke down the left before delivering a pass back to the right with the shot well taken into the top far corner.
The Coaches were confident that the opposition would slow down in the second stanza and that was exactly what happened as space in the midfield suddenly became more plentiful. This allowed us to get some better ball into the strike combination of Kyle and John. A good opportunity was created for Fozzie as he charged onto a ball in the box. Unfortunately his first shot was straight at the keeper and his followup effort wasn’t much better, John was on hand to tap in though. But somehow the ref spotted an offside in John’s follow up.
The big Romanian wasn’t to be denied though as he was on hand to finish after a good move into the box by Ethan on the right. Next up was Fozzie as this time he made no mistake slotted home with an almost identical opportunity to his first. 3-1 up with about 15 minutes to go this game should have been sealed up.
Waihopai had other ideas and following an injury to Hamish and a reshaping of the backline the speedy striker was able to beat the offside trap and headed through to calmly finish past Mitch. In late drama the same striker was once again through on goal but was chased down by Matt who was on debut and this did enough to rush the shot which went just wide of the posts. Old Boys hanging on for the win.