Matamata Swifts 6-4 Tauranga Boys’
The 2017 Loaded WaiBOP Premiership season began with a bang for Matamata Swifts as they traded ten goals with Tauranga Boys’ College at the Domain on Saturday.
Thankfully the Swifts ran out 6-4 victors, although coach Paul Richardson and his players will be a little disappointed the win wasn’t far more emphatic.
Goals from Chris Walker, Bjorn Vossen and Dayne Willemsen saw Matamata into a 3-1 half time lead, before Walker and Willemsen struck again, either side of a Brad West goal to stretch the margin to 6-2.
The students, however, looked sharp on the break and a couple of goals in the final quarter gave the final scoreline a quite remarkable look. With the game all but decided the Swifts became sloppy out of possession and rather let their opponents off the hook in what really should have been a right old hammering.
Richardson focused on the positive elements of his team’s performance. “Our attacking play looked great at times, and we probably should have had a few more goals. Obviously we’re not pleased to have let in four, though, so we have a bit of work to do on our defensive transitions.”
Richardson Racing Stables Swifts Reserves 1-1 Tauranga City United
Earlier in the day, the Richardson Racing Stables Swifts Reserves shared the points with Tauranga City United in their WaiBOP Championship opener. Koto Higashionna gave the reserves the lead at the break, but Tauranga found a way back into the game in the second half.
Both sides had opportunities to win it but neither could create the clear cut chance to snap the 1-1 deadlock.
Swifts A 4-4 Te Awamutu
The Swifts A team went through a roller coaster afternoon before finally drawing 4-4 with Te Awamutu. Goals from Hayri Cihan, a TA own goal and Jamie Cox pushed the A team into a three goal half time lead.
The visitors then went on a four goal scoring rampage after the break and looked likely to take all three points before Ronan Costello snuck in late to draw Matamata level.
Melville United 3-0 Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies
On Sunday the Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies began their Waikato Division A campaign with a hard fought 3-0 defeat at Melville United. Having been given the surprise news of their elevation to Division A less than a week before the start of the season, the Swifts Ladies did well against strong opposition. All Melville’s goals came in the first half and included two from the penalty spot. It looks like being a tough season now for the ladies, but their second half effort at Melville will give the team, and coach Nigel Leaver, heart for the fight ahead.