Tuesday, January 11, 2011

OFC U-17 Updates

In the first match of the day two of the OFC U-17 World Cup qualifiers in Auckland, the young All Whites have thrashed a very determined Vanuatu side by 5 - 1.

New Zealand started the onslaught of goals just 2 minutes into the game when striker Yamamoto made a sneaky touch of the ball inside the Vanuatu box defeating Vanuatu keeper Selonie Iaruel.

After the first goal, Vanuatu failed to find the rhythm they showed in their first match when they defeated PNG.

Perhaps New Zealand was a too much of an opponent for them.

The match went on with New Zealand dominating the mid-field and attacking positions as they went on to score three more goals before the end of first half.

In the second half, Vanuatu looked more settle as the fought back the New Zealand onslaught at the front.

Glimpses of hope for a Vanuatu come-back were revived when an elusive right-flank run and a cross by Tony Kalkat puts Santino Mermer in a good receiving position to score a screamer past the New Zealand goalkeeper Scott Basala.

With home-ground backing and support at their advantage the young All Whites however held their ground and made sure no more goals were conceded by them.

The mountain of comeback for Vanuatu was made impossible when New Zealand scored their fifth and last goal about 87 minutes into the game.

In the second match of the day, PNG has kept their chances for a spot in the play-offs alive when they silenced the much-talked about Fiji side 2 -1.

PNG, who lost their first game to Vanuatu made their attack right at the opening minute.

Fiji however were also very determined to be first on the scoreboard.

They did 21 minutes into game when Al-taaf Sahib scored a brilliant 'goal of the tournament' type long range free kick outside of the PNG box, stunning the PNG defence and the keeper Lepani.

Fiji's fighting spirits were obviously raised with their first goal advantage, as they took control of the game, dominating possession and control of the ball.

PNG however never gave up.

Their efforts paid off when captain Alwin Komolong met a cross from out wide and netted a deadly squeeze-ball through the tight Fijian defence and past Bokini the goalkeeper.

With both teams now on equal footing the on-field battle between the two very determined Melanesian neighbours had just started.

The game intensified as the players look for every possible opportunity to capitalise on.

The intensity however got an unsportman-like turn when a skirmish broke out between the young players resulting in the sending off of PNG goalie Charles Lepani and Fiji captain Josaia Masiwini at the 38th minute of the game.

Two other players, Jacob Sabua from Papua New Guinea and Soheb Sheik were also yellow-carded.

The intensity of the game continued into the second half started with another PNG player cautioned with a yellow-card.

PNG got infront in the 52nd minute of the game when Jacob Sabua blasted the ball right into the Fiji net.

The game continued with both teams having chances to score.

The fighting spirit of the game however got the better of the PNG side when another of their players was cautioned, making them then team receiving most cautions in the tournament so far.

The game ended with the goal line remaining at 2 goals PNG, 1 goal Fiji.

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