ASB Premiership - Week 11
Trafalgar Park, Nelson
Sunday 16 January, 2011
Gagame FENI 70'
Darren CHERITON 9'
Halftime: 0-1 Referee: Jamie CROSS Crowd: 2,500
by Staff reporter at Trafalgar Park, Nelson
Wellington’s sixth consecutive victory means they are all but certain to reach the ASB Premiership playoffs and remain strong contenders for a first ever minor premiership and OFC Champions League berth.
Those credentials will be placed under intense scrutiny next Saturday when they host Waitakere United in the capital.
But at Trafalgar Park, thoughts of Waitakere were far from their thoughts when Darren Cheriton opened the scoring for the visitors after just nine minutes.
The hosts almost struck back when former All White defender Gareth Rowe went close with a header but his effort failed to beat the impressive Phil Imray.
World Cup All White Aaron Clapham was absent due to an injury picked up at a weight training session, Canterbury were without their most influential player.
Nevertheless, Canterbury tested Team Wellington’s defensive qualities when Ryan Faichnie exchanged neat passes with Russell Kamo only for the visitors to scramble the ball clear just before the break.
With Team Wellington’s lead far from secure , Darren Cheriton blew a great chance when he opted to play the offside Hicham Kamri into space rather than shoot himself.
Wellington coach Stu Jacobs introduced Ryan Cain for former Nelson Suburbs striker Michael Fifii with twenty five minutes left and Cain repaid that faith with a scorcher of a goal to double the lead.
Not to be outdone, Canterbury substitute, Gagame Feni, halved the deficit when he turned home a miscued set-piece five minutes later that set up a nerve-wracking finish to an entertaining afternoon.
Canterbury piled on the pressure in search of an equalizer but a combination of missed chances and desperate defence kept Wellington’s narrow lead intact.
Danny Attwell had Canterbury’s last real chance of the match while Ryan Cain attempted a repeat of his earlier effort without luck.
Team Wellington coach Stu Jacobs was pleased to keep his team’s winning habit going.
“We came here to get three points and now we have won six on the trot,” Jacobs said, “we go for seven next week.”
The former All White defender believed his side had made their task much harder.
Canterbury United coach Keith Braithwaite lamented Darren Cheriton’s opener.
“It’s not ideal. We conceded an early goal then go two-nil down. We came back well and we may have had a draw,” Braithwaite said.
“We have to learn to pull the trigger and not be afraid in those situations,” he added.
Team Wellington host Waitakere United in the capital next Saturday while Canterbury United head to Palmerston North to face eighth placed YoungHeart Manawatu on Sunday.
1- Tom BATTY (GK)
1- Phil IMRAY (GK)
2- Dan TERRIS (c)
2- Scott ROBSON
3- Nick WORTELBOER (Jeremy WILD 46')
3- Jamie DUNCAN
4- Gareth ROWE
4- Michael EAGER
5- Tom SCHWARZ
7- Wiremu PATRICK
6- Glen COLLINS (Darren OVERTON 76')
10- Michael FIFII (Ryan CAIN 55')
9- Russell KAMO
13- Karl WHALEN (c)
11- Ryan FAICHNIE (Gagame FENI 63')
14- Hicham KAMRI (Mikey HALIKIAS 81')
13- Garry McDERMOTT
18- Darren CHERITON
15- Danny ATTWELL
19- George BARBAROUSES
22- Andy BARTON
21- Pomare TE ANAU (Emiliano TADE 57')
8- Darren OVERTON (In 76')
5- Romain CORNAND
10- Sam MILES
12- Emiliano TADE (In 57')
12- Gagame FENI (In 63')
23- Ryan CAIN (In 55')
19- Jeremy WILD (In 46')
25- Lance RAMAEKERS (GK)
22- Coey TURIPA (GK)
6- Mikey HALIKIAS (in 81')
=2 yellow cards
= red card
Play by Play
Welcome to Trafalgar Park, Nelson, for the first time this season as "home" side Canterbury United Dragons square off with a red hot in-form Team Wellington. Stu Jacobs' side have won five matches in a row and look good for a semi-final slot - can the Dragon breathe fire into their own campaign here today?
A beautiful summer's day here in Nelson where we are reliably informed the temperature is somewhere in the early thirties. Team news from Canterbury United already holds one major talking point - World Cup All White Aaron CLAPHAM is absent with a pinched nerve in his back, an injury picked up during a weights session so we are told. Team Wellington see fit to include Solomon Island forward Michael FIFII while there is no starting berth for Emiliano TADE who remains Team Wellington's "supersub" this season. Tyler LISSETTE and John SUTHERLAND are also notable absentees, LISSETTE suffered a head injury at Manawatu while SUTHERLAND appeared to leave Memorial Park nursing a hamstring strain. Referee for today's game is Jamie CROSS. Kick-off just over 35 minutes away.
Referee Jamie CROSS gets the match underway as Canterbury United go in search of three vital home points against minor premiership-chasing Team Wellington...
Team Wellington almost score when Jamie DUNCAN latches onto a mistake by Dan TERRIS. DUNCAN is through on goal but his attempted chip over Tom BATTY clears the crossbar.
GOAL! - Darren CHERITON shoots from the edge of the area and Tom BATTY can do nothing to prevent the visitors from taking the lead! 1-0 to Team Wellington!
And in remarkable news - estimates on the crowd here at Trafalgar Park indicate maybe 2000 supporters at the ground today.
A couple of half-chances created at each end but nothing clear-cut as both teams feel each other out. Wellington on course for six-in-a-row? We find out!
Best chance of the match for Canterbury so far - Gareth ROWE header at goal but no luck for the former All White. Score remains 0-1 to Team Wellington!
Ryan FAICHNIE goes on a run down the right and exchanges passes with Russell KAMO. KAMO get into a good position to reel off a shot but a Team Wellington defender steps in just in time! Ball cleared!
Referee Jamie CROSS calls for a drinks break - wise move, it's very hot here in Nelson and players' health and well-being are paramount. And that of the officials too!
YELLOW CARD - Karl WHALEN into the book for a tough challenge on Andy BARTON - free-kick comes to nothing.
Hicham KAMRI is away but Tom BATTY races 30 metres off his line to intercept the Wellington striker and clears the danger. Quick thinking, smart thinking and decisive action by BATTY.
Darren CHERITON spurns a chance to double Wellington's lead. With only BATTY to beat, CHERITON slips the ball into the path of Hicham KAMRI - who is offside. The assistant referee raises his flag and Canterbury get a reprieve.
FAICHNIE and KAMO combine to open up Team Wellington again but there is no end prouct for Canterbury.
The fourth official indicates there will be an additonal two minutes of time added on at the end of the first half.
HALFTIME: Canterbury United 0-1 Team Wellington - The visitors appear to have the edge here at Trafalgar Park, Nelson, but they will be wary of not taking full advantage of some of the chances that have come their way recently. The Dragons need to score twice if they are to get a much needed first win in five matches - a tall order?
SUBSTITUTION - Nic WORTELBOER is withdrawn and Jeremy WILD enters the fray for Canterbury United.
Half chances go begging at both ends but the score remains 0-1 to Wellington.
SUBSTITUTION - Michael FIFII, ex-Nelson player, is withdrawn and Ryan CAIN comes on for Team Wellington.
Canterbury start to assert themselves in this match - those missed first half chances could come back to haunt Wellington.
SUBSTITUTION - Pomare TE ANAU out, Emiliano TADE in - Team Wellington's supersub is on.
Ryan FAICHNIE shoots wide from 8 metres out.
SUBSTITUTION - Nelson-based Gagame FENI is brought on for Ryan FAICHNIE - perhaps an opportunity for the local hero to save the day?
GOAL! - Ryan CAIN unleashes a thunderbolt through a crowd of players and Tom BATTY is left helpless to do anything. 2-0 for Team Wellington...is Canterbury's winless streak set to continue?
GOAL! - Gagame FENI turns the ball in after a Canterbury United set-play was miscued. The local hero has thrown the Dragons a lifeline in this one - and both coaches have got their substitutions right - how right, we'll soon see.
Referee Jamie CROSS calls another drinks break - intriguing timing - what effect will this have on the tempo of the match?
SUBSTITUTION - Glen COLLINS is replaced by Darren OVERTON as Canterbury exhaust their bench options in search of an equaliser.
Team Wellington clear a shot off the line!
Danny ATTWELL has a chance but he lays the ball off - frustration for the home side.
Garry McDERMOTT takes a free-kick just outside the Wellington penalty area but poses no danger to Phil IMRAY.
Half-chances abound as Team Wellington almost look like giving up their advantage. YoungHeart Manawatu almost snatched a point off Wellington last week, so Canterbury have everything to play for in these hot weather conditions.
The fourth official indicates there will be an additional four minutes of time added on. Anxious finish set up here - stay tuned!
End to end stuff with Danny ATTWELL presented with a chance but no luck for the Canterbury player. Ryan CAIN tries another shot from distance but the Wellington substitute's effort lands on the roof of the net.
Final crowd estimated at 2,500 here in Nelson - that's a great figure for the ASB Premiership. Nelson, take a bow.
FULLTIME: Canterbury United 1-2 Team Wellington - that's fulltime here in Nelson, Team Wellington make it six wins from six games and their pursuit of the minor premiership and OFC Champions League berth is alive and well. Canterbury is still in the mix but only just. They remain without a win and are now three points behin Hawke's Bay and Waikato FC with five rounds remaining in he regular season.