ASB Premiership - Week 8
Caledonian Ground, Dunedin
Sunday 12 December, 2010
Phil Ruggles 86'
Russell Kamo 35'
Halftime: 0 - 1 Referee: Nick Waldron Crowd: ~200
by Rab Smith at Tahuna Park
No chance of spectators leaving early at Tahuna park, Dunedin, where Otago United showed character and dogged determination to plunder maximum points with two late goals to beat Canterbury United 2-1.
Otago scored twice in the last seven minutes, and if that was not exciting enough, Canterbury’s centreback and captain Dan Terris got his red card marching orders for foul and abusive language to referee Nick Waldron after the equalizer.
That lack of discipline by Terris at 1-1 cost Canterbury dearly, as Nathan Knox wrote his name into Otago folklore with a 93rd minute winner, driving the ball low through an attempted block tackle, and under keeper Tom Batty.
Canterbury coach Keith Braithwaite saw all this from a distance, since he too was banished from the field on advice from FIFA assistant referee Brent Best after comments to that official.
Yet this was no smash and grab by Otago.
Coach Malcolm Fleming said, “This was our best performance for a few years, In difficult windy conditions, the team played consistently good football against what is regarded as a top Canterbury side.”
“There were no bad performances, and some very, very good form was shown by the likes of Nathan Knox, Andy Coburn, James Reichwein and our keeper Adam Highfield.”
“But for a single defensive blunder – that cost us that first half goal – our team shape was steady, as we defended high, and supported attacks in numbers.”
With Tim Horner back in defence, he and Tom Sadd conceded little to the pacey Canterbury attack in which All White Aaron Clapham was anonymous.
Despite being less than fully fit, substitute Phil Ruggles came on late to devastating effect, and his well worked goal originated with Hancock stealing the ball as Canterbury failed to clear, then Ruggles worked a 1-2 pass with Knox before scoring from close range in the 86th minute.
Knox’s injury time winner was a just reward for the big guys tireless endeavor and skill, as he drove the ball low through a Canterbury tackle, and under keeperTom Batty, before being submerged in celebrating team mates.
Canterbury coach Braithwaite was sizzling with rage at the late reversal, but kept enough composure to say only that he was “very disappointed” with the match officials’ performances.
He said, “I felt we controlled the game, and after that red card (to Terris) we actually beat ourselves. Our best players were Andy Barton and Dan Atwell, and I thought Russell Kamo took his goal well.”
Canterbury may have missed the presence of Gareth Rowe and Joe Murray, but they played their usual tidy passing game, with pace up the flanks.
Yet only Kamo really posed a threat to Otago, and it’s worth considering that at the other end Paul Seaman drew gasps of amazement with an agile overhead kick that hit the base of Canterbury’s post, and Phil Ruggles launched a header that struck the visitors woodwork.
A less than fully fit Ruggles came on from the bench as Otago generated its last ditch offensive and was a positive factor in the win.
The chunky Englisman came on late to devastating effect, and his well worked goal originated with Hancock stealing the ball as Canterbury failed to clear, then Ruggles worked a 1-2 pass with Knox before scoring from close range to equalise in the 86th minute.
The strong wind blowing lengthwise along the pitch threatened to spoil the match as a spectacle, but to their credit, both sides played controlled football in a cut and thrust match that pleased the large support.
1. Adam Highfield (GK)
1. Tom Batty (GK)
26. Tristan Prattley
2. Dan Terris (C)
6. Tom Sadd
3. Nick Wortelboer
7. Nathan Knox
5. Tom Schwarz
8. Paul Seaman
6. Glen Collins
11. Andy Coburn
7. Aaron Clapham (Willis 90')
12. James Reichwein
8. Darren Overton
17. Tim Horner (C)
9. Russell Kamo
18. Harley Rodeka (Rickerby 60')
15. Danny Attwell
23. Ant Hancock
23. Andy Barton (Feni 76')
25. Tom Connor (Ruggles 80')
25. Andy Pitman (McDermott 58')
22. Callum Flaws (RGK)
11. Ryan Faichnie
10. Phil Ruggles (on80')
12. Gagame Feni (on 76')
14. Al Rickerby (on 60')
17. Ryan Tippett
21. Liam Lockhart
21. Michael Willis (on 90')
24. Curtis Day
13. Garry McDermott (on 58')
=2 yellow cards
= red card
Play by Play
Welcome to Tahuna Park for round 8 of the ASB Premiersip, The sun is out but with high winds crossing the pitch it will force both teams to play the low ball and keep in control as much as possible.
Canterbury win toss, Otago take Kick
Highfield rushes off his line to clear a ball with his fist to avoid it being picked up by the wind
Otago get the chance to clear the ball from their half with a free kick
Chance on goal by Reichwein as close play turns a little scrappy, shot is blocked and Canterbury try to gain control of the ball
Knox is not tall enough as the ball is held up in a small lob inside Canterbury's box
Otago have another shot on goal again unable to clear the Canterbury defenders.
Canterbury gain control and a high cross into Otago's 6yard box isn't low enough for Barton to make contact
Highfield's goal kick is unable to make the distance in the wind, the ball floats high and starts drifting back
Canterbury on attack, a very high ball by Schwarz puts the ball right in Highfields head and the clash with the Canterbury striker gives the Otago keeper a free kick
Canterbury again move up the right hand side of the pitch forcing the defence to step up
Great cross from Prattley sticks the ball right across Canterbury's box but the wind makes it hard to judge moving between 2 Otago players bith unable to make it to the ball
Otago push Canterbury back after another attack in which Prattley is forced to use Highfield to clear the ball up
Game play is moving end to end as both teams are unable to hold the ball well in the close game
Connor makes his first cross into Canterbury's box after picking the ball, but intercepted by a defender
Play has settled down, Canterbury have relaxed and are keeping control longer
Canterbury make good use of a free kick to get it up the pitch, the flick on by Kamo with his head doesn't reach far enough and Seaman clears the ball up the field
Catnerbury change point of attack moving the ball from the right side to the left in.
The ball is pushed in and a shot is almost with Connor sliding in to push the ball away from the Canterbury attacker
Otago push hard getting the ball on Canterbury's 18 yard box, a stike from Reichwein hits a defender and ends up at the feet of Kamo who had pulled right back
Otago gives the ball away as a clearing shot goes longer then expected
YELLOW CARD given to Pitman after taking down Knox as he gets the ball around him with what could of been a clear shot on goal.
Free kick given to Canterbury is agured after the ball comes off a Canterbury players hand, Knox argues but the ref has made up his mind.
Otago gets a free kick and Highfield is called to make the kick
Highfields kick goes long and is picked up by Canterbury player and is passed around until it meets Kamo who cuts behind Prattley and puts the ball into Highfields near post, GOAL
Great save by Highfield as Canterbury make another run and strike at the Otago goal
Canterbury still makes the runs and crosses but are limited by the lack of people in Otago's half
Clapham's turn to take a strike on goal but is unable to put it on target going high
Wortelboer takes the run down the right side, the past was too far ahead for him to hold it up before going over the line for goal kick
Batty is Keeping his cool as he is required to move off his line fast to get the high ball.
Free kick for Canterbury in Otago's half, but the offside flag is up as quick as an attack is started.
Canterbury is keeping on Otago's players waiting for any chance to move forward again. But the other end they are only just holding out with Otago trying hard to attack back.
Half time called, Otago 0 - Canterbury 1
Half Time: NO Changes made from either team
Canterbury take the kick off for this half pushing it forward quickly to get Otago back under pressure
Highfield takes a large free kick from an offside and with the wind at his back it carrys into Canterbury's half.
Otago are unable to stay on their feet as they try to hold control of the ball in front of Canterbury's goal
Handball on Knox as the first touch bounces it up
End to end play returns as both teams put pressure on to score
Barton's cross gains a lot of spin as it reflects off Connor's foot and the spin curves it around to Highfield instead of going out for the corner
Rodeka is given a word to after a tackle brings him and the Canterbury striker down, the ref plays in favor of Canterbury
Great run in by Hancock putting a head to the ball but sending it a little too high
Canterbury's freshed legged player makes the run to center of the goal but Barton is closed down before he can make the cross
The wind has picked up as Canterbury force Otago back as they make an attack and try to push more ahead.
Canterbury corner kick is just off target hitting the top of the cross bar and going out for goal kick.
Otago put effort in again to try and attack back but each ball is cut out by a Canterbury player, Otago need to get closer if they want to score, taking a shot from the edge of the 18 yard isn't going to help.
Ref pulls up a free kick as Rickerby is held up with a Canterbury player is grabbing him
Close foot play has both teams working to secure the ball
YELLOW CARD for Connor as a tackle from the side takes out Kamo
Otago get 2 corners both go high and have a lot of curve, the second gives Canterbury a goal kick
Free kick is given to Otago after Reichwein takes a dive with the Canterbury player falling over him
The closest chance Otago have had, Rickerby picking up the ball passing it out to his right and with a cross in low it was closely met by a Canterbury defender
Batty makes a well needed save to keep Canterbury ahead as a high ball comes in and is knocked in all directions
Otago making another couple of great runs this time Hancock shooting to Batty's far post just unable to get the right side of it
Ruggles gets the final boot on and ends up smacking the upright to come back out
Otago have finally started moving like a team with a collection of at least 8 passes getting it up and with passes around the ball is put to Ruggles who with a good strike puts it away in Canterbury's net to even the score
RED CARD given to Terris for what looks like bad language towards the ref picked up by the lines man
Bad pass in front of Goal by
4th Offical shows 5 minutes added
Canterbury have won a corner and with little time left Canterbury are looking to score.
The ref stops play and Canterbury's coach is told to leave.
Otago win a free kick, Highfield kicks it up and Otago keep it going out on the line, Canterbury try to move it around, Otago take it up to Canterbury's corner and hold it up.
Another get run as Otago Try to extent their lead.