Sunday Wrap: Round 10
03 July 2014
The best Sunday of the season finally arrived as not only our Premier and Division 4 first teams recorded much needed wins but our three socials teams got on the board with their first victories and points of the season as our club recorded 6 wins, 4 draws and just 1 defeat.
Following last week's dramatic loss to BB United the Premiers were hoping to bounce back against an in form Southern Spirit side. However the omens were not great when Rovers lost two of their starting 11 at the last minute, with critically one of them being first team coach Garrett McDuling. This meant a call up for veteran defender and former Burnley player, Nigel Smith and a return to first team action for Matt Emery. Shaun Gibbons also returned to the side after a brief sojourn in Bali. Tel Stupple again took the reigns in McDulings absence.
The game started sharply with Hamersley looking to use the width of the park and Spirit trying to remain compact and play on the counter. Hamersley were content to keep the ball though and manipulate the opposition's defensive coverage. Conor Fullard and Nick Hage were offering excellent width and clever combination play between Harry Davis, Dec Peters and Shaun Gibbons was frustrating the Spirit midfield. Hamersley finally found a break when the experienced Dan Fowler beat his man before being hauled to the ground in the box. Captain Dec Peters took the penalty and drilled the ball firmly in to the goal.
Hamersley continued to press and nearly doubled their advantage after a fired up Dave Howell powered a thunderous first time shot from outside the box onto the Spirit bar. Hearts were in mouths when misplaced pass landed straight at the feet of the Spirit striker at the edge of the 18 yard box. Despite a gaping goal the Spirit lad will want to forget his effort which troubled the traffic on the road behind more than it did the score board. The half finished with Hamersley leading 1-0.
The second half saw an increase of intensity from Spirit as they pushed for an equaliser. Almost immediately Hammers nearly conceded a penalty as a ball bobbled unkindly for powerful centre back Billy Wright and appeared to hit his hand. Despite a prolonged protest the referee was not for convincing and Rovers survived the scare. With 10 minutes of the second half gone Rovers lost Dave Howell to injury and he was replaced by Michael Garcia. Garcia's impact was immediate and he broke through Spirit's now high defensive line and finished with aplomb. The goal deflated Spirit and Rovers now looked to add to their total.
The third goal was slotted away by cavalier fullback Conor Fullard. Fullard who was effective all match underlapped his winger and jinked through a static defence before slipping the ball passed the advancing keeper. Hamersley had several other opportunities to add to the tally. Steve Kruit, on as replacement for Fowler, spurned a couple of opportunities and Garcia also may have felt aggrieved to have been flagged offside after a powerful header which would have made it 4.
At the other end Matty Bell, chasing a first clean sheet, was determined to repel the opposition and pulled off two good stops to deny any thought of a comeback. Nigel 'Smudge' Smith made his debut with 15 to go after the influential Gibbons was forced from the field nursing his ankle. All in all a satisfying day for the Hammers who were pleased with the clean sheet and elated with the points. Interim coach Tel Stupple "We had a plan today and the lads were superb in making sure we implemented it. On the ball and with our general movement we were tremendous and off it we were tenacious. This was a victory underpinned by hard work. Spirit are a decent side so we knew we had to try and move them about and I think we got the rewards for that today." The reserves remain in second following a 1-0 win. Aaron Parson with the solitary goal in a game where the Spirit crossbar was the star.
Division 4 got their long awaited first win of the season, 5-1 against Sporting Warriors in an excellent display. It was richly deserved for the team that has been so close to getting a break through before now. Division 4 Reserves were up against a very good Sporting Warriors Reserves with more than just a hint of Brazilian flair and despite looking for a fourth win in a row, Warriors were too good and won 6-1.
Ladies I had a hard fought game with 3rd placed Port Kennedy drawing 1-1 while Ladies II recorded the same scoreline in a top of the table clash with Maccabi.
Social I got their first win of the season with a 2-0 vs Southern Spirit, the first of the 3 wins out of 3 for the Hamersley – Spirit triple header. Social II also recorded their first win with a comfortable 3-0 result away to Westside. Social III went so close to their first win but settled for their first point after leading against Curtin University but couldn’t hold out after going down to 10 men through injury.
Masters I had a long trip down to Mandurah and despite taking the lead found themselves 3-1 down. Two late goals salvaged a draw for a 3-3 result. Masters II travelled up to Quinns and came away with a 1-0 victory.
It’s cup round this Sunday with Ladies I away Beckenham Angels while Premiers, Premier Reserves and Masters I are home to Brooklands, Subiaco and AFC Joondalup respectively.
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