SELECT Futsal Premier League – Round 7 Open Men’s Preview
SELECT Futsal Premier League round 7 Saturday clashes pit Campbelltown Quake against Mountain Majik at Minto Indoor Sports Centre (4.50pm), Dural Warriors face Eastern Suburbs Hakoah at The Centre (6.50pm), Enfield Allstars meet UTS Northside at the Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre (8.05pm), and Mascot Vipers play Inner West Magic at All Sorts Indoor Sports centre (8.50pm).
The competition table mirrors a typical day on Sydney’s road network with Dural (13 points), Mascot (11), Mountain (10), Inner West (7), Easts (7), Enfield (7), Campbelltown (7) and Northside (5) bumper-to-bumper nearing midway through the season.
Not only is it a top-of-the-table clash in the open men’s between Magic and Vipers but they’re also embroiled in a club championship battle, and a vital grab for points between Inner West (87) and Mascot (74) is sure to advantage chasers Hakoah (65) and Majik (63), while UTS (54), Quake (50), Warriors (43) and Allstars (42) scrap for league survival.
Campbelltown Quake vs Mountain Majik
Campbelltown Quake and Mountain Majik meet at an opportune time at Minto Indoor Sports Centre on Saturday afternoon.
Mountain have fallen from joint-first to third in a fortnight and can be gobbled up by a desperate Campbelltown if they falter again this weekend.
But Quake haven’t scored in two weeks (3-0 and 4-0 losses), have won once in five rounds, and can’t afford to sit in the slump if they have playoff aspirations.
Campbelltown do hold a commanding historical edge winning six of the eight matches against Majik, Mark Symington doing outrageous damage in collecting 11 goals across those fixtures, and Quake are unbeaten at Minto in four runs.
Majik have taken plenty of right steps forward since their premier league introduction to be a much more mature opponent these days, and they might remember a solid 5-3 win vs the ‘Towners at this venue 11 months ago.
Dural Warriors vs Eastern Suburbs Hakoah
It’s been a long time between drinks but Dural Warriors and Eastern Suburbs Hakoah hook up at The Centre on Saturday evening for the first time in a decade.
Table-toppers Dural romped around with Easts in the inaugural division two (State League) of 2007/08 and both made the 2008/09 finals before Warriors ascended to the upper echelon and began their well-documented open-men’s dominance.
Hakoah’s story is one of an even longer quest to gain top-flight billing, but there are still plenty of parallels: Dural’s made eight finals in their nine PL forays for a comp-record six premierships and six championship trophies, while Easts made eight playoffs in their 11 PL2 summers for a comp-record four premierships and three championships.
After a sluggish start to this season the Warriors are on the surge once again. Only 13 registered times has a side won five straight league matches and should Dural get up it’ll be the ninth time a Warriors side has done it (and at least once every summer since 2011/12).
Dural knocked out Hakoah 4-2 in their Futsal Cup meeting late last month. Let the battle begin!
Enfield Allstars vs UTS Northside
Enfield Allstars versus UTS Northside at the Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre on massive Saturday night for both sides.
Early-season stutters hasn’t helped either team build momentum and victory would be welcome relief, but UTS will definitely have to shake off their travelling woes to do it – they’ve gone win-less in their last five road trips.
The head-to-head doesn’t look great for them either, just one Northside win in eight encounters and Allstars have won the last three running.
Enfield were on a roll knocking over Easts and then Inner West in successive weeks before last week’s 3-5 stumble to second-placed Mascot, but they certainly look like they’ve shaken off the cobwebs that kept them glued to the starting pistol.
Mascot Vipers vs Inner West Magic
It’s the 21st edition of Mascot Vipers versus Inner West Magic – being played at All Sorts Indoor Sports centre on Saturday night – and what a match-up it’s sure to be.
Rising Inner West are buoyed by their 4-0 demolition of Easts last week but face a Mascot side undefeated at home in four runs (equaling a club-record) and looking for an All Sorts triple-victory against their old foes Magic – the only clubs to have contested every premier league season.
Vipers have to defy history to grab glory as they’ve only defeated Inner West once in their last 16 meetings (three draws), and that was way back in September 2011. Magic have won the last seven.
Not that Mascot haven’t been competitive, the last 15 games (since their 9-5 win) have all been decided by three goals or less.
-By Dan de Nardi