Only one of Matamata Swifts’ four senior teams were in action last weekend after the weather played a major part in the region’s football proceedings.
Comag Matamata Swifts came within five minutes of turning over the Loaded WaiBOP Premiership’s current top side, Tauranga Boys’, away from home but had to settle for a point from a 1-1 draw. It was a frustrating ending and similar, in many ways, to several of the team’s early season results, but also reasonably promising given the team regularly struggles in the narrow confines of Southey Field.
Tauranga is the league’s current leading scorers, by quite some way, but the Swifts were able to nullify their hosts’ attacking threat during a cagey, goalless first half. The normally vibrant home side struggled to get going, in large part thanks to Matamata’s organisation and willingness to counter.
The Swifts took the lead on the hour when Jamie Baxter lashed home a free kick for his first goal of the season. Matamata then had to dig in to repel periods of sustained pressure from their opponents.
Unfortunately Tauranga was able to slot one goal home in the dying stages to end the game all square and take the gloss off what was a more consistent performance from a Swifts side suffering the now familiar slew of injuries.
Swifts coach, Scott Parsonage, has had a challenging start to his time in the top job, with injuries to key players being a key theme during the first couple of months of the season. This has, quite naturally, hampered performances, but the team is moving closer to producing the sort of consistent performances needed to contend in the Premiership this season.
With most of the Premiership’s leading sides dropping points over the weekend there was little movement in the standings. Only seven points separate first from eleventh in a congested league.
Waharoa Transport Matamata Reserves had the WaiBOP Championship’s bye this weekend, while both the Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies and the Swifts 3rd team had their scheduled Sunday matches postponed.
The men’s first and reserve teams are both playing at home this coming weekend, while the ladies, the 3rd team and all the club’s junior sides have the long weekend off.