Comag Matamata Swifts eased to their largest victory of the 2018 Loaded WaiBOP Premiership campaign on Saturday, seeing off bottom side Hamilton Wanderers 4-0 at the Domain.
In what’s becoming a now familiar task, coach Scott Parsonage was forced into making a pre-match injury and illness-induced reshuffle and the side started slowly. While both teams created early chances it was the visitors who will be cursing their luck after hitting the woodwork twice inside the first ten minutes following hesitant Swifts defending.
However, once Dayne Willemsen had been hooked in the box on 17 minutes, and Jamie Baxter had dispatched the resulting spot kick, there was only going to be one winner. Matamata settled themselves down in their own defensive third and launched multiple attacks that were denied either by last ditch defending or good goalkeeping.
Two goals in the ten minutes leading up to the break ended the match as a contest. Kody Nowell rifled home from 15 yards after a slick counter attack, then Bjorn Vossen slapped home his first of the season to give Matamata a three goal half time lead.
Dayne Willemsen buried Matamata’s fourth goal six minutes into the second half and the rout looked on, but the match kind of petered out after that. The Swifts were in complete control and should have added to their tally, but were wasteful and also saw a couple of big calls go against them as the frustrated visitors became more than a little spiteful. Thankfully it was a day the team didn’t really need the rub of the green so no harm was done.
A couple of times the Swifts were guilty of overplaying at the back but preserved their clean sheet. Youngsters Duran Weaver-Smith and Radge Avergonzado were able to get some more first team minutes off the bench, while Hardeep Singh continued his comeback from a long-term injury with a solid 20 minute showing.
In the early game, Waharoa Transport Matamata Reserves conceded a goal in each half to slip to a 2-0 defeat to Otumoetai’s Reserves. It was a disappointing showing from the reserves who barely fired a shot. Possession was given up cheaply and rare was the occasion a pass found its mark. For a side that has competed so well at times in 2018 this was a classic learning experience, particularly for the squad’s younger players.