Swifts win their Chatham Cup thriller

Matamata Chronicle - - What’s On - DWAYNE BAR­LOW

Mata­mata Swifts have nav­i­gated the first hur­dle of New Zealand sport’s old­est knock-out cup com­pe­ti­tion, the Chatham Cup, af­ter a thrilling 5-4 ex­tra time vic­tory over Auck­land-based In­ter­na­tionale FC.

The Swifts’ at­tack­ing prow­ess and de­fen­sive frail­ties were on show, but this was a match they should have com­fort­ably wrapped up in reg­u­la­tion time. Mata­mata struck twice in the open­ing 15 min­utes, through an own goal then a Scott Par­son­age drive, and ap­peared on the way to vic­tory. But their ex­pe­ri­enced op­po­nents hit back twice from set-pieces to see the game level at the break.

The wood­work twice came to In­ter­na­tionale’s res­cue, from a first half Chris Walker ef­fort then a sec­ond half Dayne Willem­sen strike, but the tie was thrown up­side down when they hit the front with 20 min­utes re­main­ing.

Sam Master­son drove home the lev­eller with a minute left, then Walker put Mata­mata back in front five min­utes into ex­tra time. Radge Aver­gon­zado, on de­but, tucked home the fifth. In­ter­na­tionale grabbed one back mid­way through the fi­nal pe­riod but the Swifts man­aged to see the game out.

Richard­son Rac­ing Sta­bles Swifts re­serves com­pleted the first win of their WaiBOP Championship sea­son, 4-1 over Old Blues. A first half dou­ble from Ra­man­deep Singh, ei­ther side of a Bruno Dos San­tos’ goal, had the re­serves lead­ing com­fort­ably at the break. Radge Aver­gon­zado wrapped the game up in the fi­nal 10 min­utes. The re­sult, which could have been by a larger mar­gin, was a good re­turn for an ex­cel­lent at­tack­ing per­for­mance.

The Swifts A team lost 2-1 to Te Aroha. The scores were level at one apiece at the break, af­ter Rob Cox scored to can­cel out the vis­i­tor’s early lead. Te Aroha struck the de­ci­sive blow in the sec­ond half of a match that could have gone ei­ther way.

The Chal­lenge Mata­mata Swifts Ladies lost 5-2 at ti­tle favourites, Cam­bridge. The hosts took the lead early be­fore Ca­t­rina Mor­ris equalised. Cam­bridge stretched their lead to 3-1 at half time, be­fore Pa­trice Adam­son hit back for Mata­mata in the sec­ond half. Cam­bridge scored twice late, but Mata­mata’s im­prov­ing per­for­mances show they are now com­fort­able at this level.

Lo­gan Raynel (19) and Chris Walker on the at­tack for Mata­mata Swifts in their win over In­ter­na­tionale FC.

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