Hard-fought win for UWA

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Let's Travel - Tris­tan Tay­lor

A STRONG open­ing and close to the game gave UWA Ned­lands FC a hard-fought 3-1 win over Sham­rock Rovers FC in their State League Divi­sion One en­counter at UWA Sports Park.

Sham­rock was caught sleep­ing from the first whis­tle as UWA made it 1-0 within the open­ing minute.

An in­tel­li­gent through ball from Morde­cai Ap­piah was played into the path of Alex Kre­tow­icz and the for­ward calmly slot­ted it past the on­com­ing keeper to give the home side the lead.

UWA con­tin­ued to ap­ply pres­sure to the Sham­rock back four and the vis­i­tors were strug­gling to cre­ate any­thing go­ing for­ward.

UWA came within inches of dou­bling their lead when Michael Vla­sich’s vi­cious shot from dis­tance was goal-bound but Sham­rock’s goal­keeper pro­duced a fan­tas­tic save to deny the cen­tre back.

Sham­rock was start­ing to find their feet and had a hand­ful of chances, prov­ing es­pe­cially dan­ger­ous from set pieces.

At the other end, the ex­cel­lent feet and vi­sion of Conor Devlin was prov­ing too much for Rovers to han­dle.

UWA could have found them­selves fur­ther in front when Devlin picked out the run of full­back Tris­tan Tay­lor on mul­ti­ple oc­ca­sions, but yet again the Rovers keeper was quick off his line to clear the dan­ger.

On the half-hour mark, Rovers found them­selves on level terms from a for­tu­nate op­por­tu­nity.

A cor­ner was ini­tially well cleared by Josh Maroc­chi but it only went as far as the Rovers mid­fielder, whose shot into the crowded box was de­flected to the feet of Rover’s striker Nathan Hibbert who made no mis­take from close range.

The rest of the half proved un­event­ful, with strong winds mak­ing it dif­fi­cult for ei­ther side to pro­duce any clear op­por­tu­ni­ties.

UWA started the sec­ond half in sim­i­lar fash­ion to the first and found them­selves back in front af­ter five min­utes.

A fan­tas­tic build-up down the right hand side from Devlin and Kre­tow­icz put An­drew Xy­das clear on goal and the mid­fielder fin­ished clin­i­cally to put UWA 2-1 up.

UWA had chances to go fur­ther in front, with the best fall­ing to Marc Zagami.

The mid­fielder did well ini­tially to con­trol a tough ball on the edge of the box but snatched at his shot and missed the tar­get.

Rovers re­mained dan­ger­ous on the break and UWA had goal­keeper Alex Preece to thank for keep­ing them ahead as the shot-stop­per was called into ac­tion sev­eral times.

But Rovers lost any chance of a late equaliser when their cen­tre back was sent off with 10 min­utes re­main­ing af­ter bring­ing down Kre­tow­icz on the edge of the box.

The re­sul­tant free kick was struck into the wall by Michael Vla­sich but it wasn’t to mat­ter as UWA found their third goal of the af­ter­noon in the fi­nal minute.

Zagami picked the ball up in­side his own half and played a bril­liant one-two with Kre­tow­icz to send him­self clear on goal be­fore hold­ing his nerve to calmly pick out the bot­tom cor­ner and seal the deal for UWA.

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