Well, the form guide certainly went out the window judging by the results in this weekend?s round of matches. Suffice to say also that, should TAB Sportsbet ever start running a book on the Arrive Alive NSW Womens Premier League, punting on this writer?s selections would be a short path to bankruptcy!
Competition leaders Macarthur Rams ventured to Marconi Stadium in an effort to avenge their defeat at the hands of The Stallions earlier this season. The Rams have been in fine form in recent weeks with wins over NWS Koalas and Manly United in their resume. Marconi were seeking some redemption for last weekend?s loss at the hands of Koalas. This promised to be quite a spirited clash.
Obviously Marconi Stadium was no place for the feint hearted. The 24th minute saw Marconi awarded a penalty after a foul on Amanda Cergovski. However, this opportunity was snuffed out by a fine save from Macarthur custodian Monique Jackson.
Cergovski remained in the spotlight when, in the 30th minute, she became embroiled in a confrontation with Rams star Kylie Ledbrook after a strong tackle. Both girls were given their marching orders which meant that the FFA?s new ?small sided games? initiative had suddenly come to the Arrive Alive NSW Womens Premier League!
Ten on ten opened up a few gaps. In the 39th minute, after some good Stallions build up down the left, Marconi?s Wendy Graham opened the scoring. This remained the only goal until the half time break, despite The Rams creating a number of opportunities of their own.
Marconi?s Trudy Camilleri had been a regular on the Marconi score sheet in recent weeks and added to her tally with a long range goal from general play in the 78th minute. Trudy then completed a brace when she finished off a great cross from Ayse Adalis to score in the 85th minute. So, 180 minutes of football between these two clubs in 2008 and the tally stands at 8-0 to Marconi! They certainly seem to have the wood on the defending premiers.
Marconi now visit Cromer Park in the next round for a match with Manly United FC whilst Macarthur host Penrith Nepean at Lynwood Park.
Marconi Stallions 3 (T.Camelleri 2, W.Graham)
Macarthur Rams 0
Okay, yes, that was a bit of an upset I guess. But surely everything else would go by the book for the weekend?
Sydney University, fresh from their first win of the season last weekend, hosted Manly United FC at Sydney University Oval. Manly have scored some good wins this season, as well as being very competitive in matches with the competition front runners. University didn?t look likely to trouble the strong Manly line up but someone had forgotten to tell Uni that.
University opened the scoring through Duncan in the 9th minute, holding that 1-0 advantage until half time. Manly eventually equalised in the 54th minute after Neville scored but if they thought that strike would open the floodgates they were sadly mistaken. University held on strongly to grab an unlikely point and damaged Manly?s climb up the ladder in the process. What?s more they?d now be fancying their trip to Sutherland next Sunday to meet the free falling Sharks.
This is a result that should give the University girls great heart for their upcoming matches. Manly? Well, was it a matter of never counting your chickens before they hatch?
Sydney University 1 (J.Duncan)
Manly United FC 1 (L.Neville)
Okay, okay. A surprise? Sure. These things do happen though. Wouldn?t happen anywhere else though. Or could it?
Central Coast Lightning have not had a good season. Their young side has sustained plenty of damage against the premiership heavyweights before suffering a shattering defeat in the ?bottom of the table? clash with Sydney University last weekend. Their opponents, Sutherland Sharks, haven?t been travelling too well themselves having lost five in row leading into this game. These two sides had drawn 0-0 in the first game of the season after Sutherland dominated for most of the match. Surely Sutherland would awake from the doldrums here?
Hmm, if someone changed the script here they didn?t let The Sharks in on it. Central Coast flew out of the blocks with Kirstyn Pearce grabbing a goal for the home side in just the 4th minute. Central Coast haven?t spent too much time leading games this season but they played as if it was a natural scenario for them. Sutherland tried hard to peg them back but The Sharks old Achilles heel of not being able to score goals reared its ugly head again. Try as they might they couldn?t snatch an equaliser and The Lightning held on for their first win of 2008.
Coach Scott Howison will finally have a good night?s sleep; that?s if he?s not still out on the town celebrating. A great tonic for the Central Coast ladies. Sutherland Coach Michael Michael, on the other hand, must be wondering just where The Sharks next points are coming from.
Central Coast Lightning 1 (K.Pearce)
Sutherland Sharks 0
Alright. Yes, I know I tipped Sutherland. Yes, I know I said Manly would win comfortably. I know?..say, who the hell am I talking to???
The second placed NWS Koalas took the trip to the foot of the mountains to meet the in form Penrith Nepean. The Koalas were fresh from a hard fought win over Marconi, Penrith were after their fourth win in a row. Not the easiest road trip for the Koalas but they?re a side that seem to thrive on a challenge.
Alicia Cavangah, fresh from a goal against her old side at Marconi Stadium last week, opened the scoring in the 17th minute. Koalas held this 1-0 lead into half time before Cavanagh decide to add a second goal at the 62 minute mark. Rockall snatched one back for Penrith in the 75th minute, giving the mountain girls a sniff of a comeback. Not to be however, when Cavanagh completed her hat trick in the 87th minute for The Koalas. Quite a day out for the NWS striker. Obviously boxing training is a good diet for goal seeking strikers!
So the Koalas regain the top spot on the ladder after Macarthur?s loss to Marconi. The Koalas juggernaut keeps on rolling??
Penrith Nepean United 1 (T.Rockall)
NWS Koalas 3 (A.Cavanagh 3)
My tipping licence has been officially revoked. However, I?m for hire to any club wishing to put a death knell on their opponents. Be warned though that the asking price is steep!
Quite a round of football. Everyone likes to see the underdogs do well and today appears to have qualified as the official Underdogs Day. Well done ladies!
-By Ross Anderson