Comag Matamata Swifts felt the full force of 2021 WaiBOP Premiership title favourites, Ngaruawahia United, during the final period of their opening match of the new season.
In what had been a reasonably competitive encounter through until the closing stages, some costly mistakes and slick finishing saw a juiced up Green Machine hit the net four times in twelve minutes to run out 7-2 winners and lay down a marker as the team to beat this season.
Before the carnage, the Swifts had showed some promise. Ngaruawahia raced to a two goal lead inside twenty minutes, before a neat finish from Chris Walker and a sweet volley from Pete Shannon hauled the Swifts back to level terms before the break.
Matamata even started the second half strongly. But Ngaruawahia regained the lead midway through the half, celebrated as only they would, then put on the afterburners as things began to get a bit ragged for the Swifts. The ruthlessness with which they completed their afternoon’s work will have been noticed across the league.
For the Swifts, a generally promising showing will have been overshadowed by the late capitulation, but there’s also the, admittedly rather small, consolation that they won’t have to play a side of this quality every week.
In friendlies, Waharoa Transport Swifts Reserves beat Putaruru 5-0, while Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies lost 3-1 at W-League side, Otumoetai.
The Swifts are away to newly promoted Claudelands Rovers this coming Saturday. The club’s remaining senior teams begin their season on the weekend of April 10/11.