Football: Late drama as top sides falter in NZ Premiership

By Niall Anderson

Tasman goal keeper Tom Fawdry saves the potential match-winning penalty. Photo / Photosport
Tasman goal keeper Tom Fawdry saves the potential match-winning penalty. Photo / Photosport

Two Auckland clubs lead the way, but it was scenes further south which produced the major talking point of the latest Stirling Sports Premiership round.

Waitakere United and Auckland City hold the top two spots on the ladder, ahead of Team Wellington, whose 3-3 draw with Hawke's Bay United provided plenty of drama.

While the game had plenty of highlights on the field, the off-field antics of Hawke's Bay United coach Brett Angell caught the eye of many.

Angell was sent from the sideline in the second half for continually remonstrating with the referee, but then flouted instructions by continuing to communicate with his assistants, and using his substitutes to run pieces of paper to his coaching staff.

His questionable behaviour overshadowed a quality performance from his side, who performed well to earn a point away from home, and dropped Wellington back into third on the ladder.

The top spot is currently owned by Waitakere, who claimed a 3-1 victory over Southern United on Saturday to go two points clear of Auckland City and Wellington. The fourth and final playoff spot is currently occupied by Eastern Suburbs, who defeated Hamilton Wanderers 3-1.

Auckland have a game in hand on their fellow playoff contenders, but missed a chance to share top spot after a 2-2 draw with Canterbury United.

Ramon Tribulietx's side seemed to have sealed a tight victory when Alfie Rogers gave them a 2-1 lead in the 84th minute, but Andre De Jong was dragged down in the box in injury time, giving Canterbury a last-gasp penalty.

The initial effort was saved by City goalkeeper Enaut Zubikarai, but the linesman ruled he did so illegally, and the re-take was tucked away by Tom Schwarz to rescue a late point.

In the other game played this round, Tasman United picked up their fourth draw of the season, holding the Wellington Phoenix Reserves to a 1-1 stalemate.

The youthful Phoenix side had a chance to win the game with a penalty in the 92nd minute, but Tasman goalkeeper Tom Fawdry pulled off a fine low save to make up for an earlier error and maintain a point for his side.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW
Stats provided by

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf05 at 22 Aug 2017 08:21:54 Processing Time: 432ms