First team welcomed Waterside Karori to Jim Cooke Park on a beautiful Waikanae day; this was the first time since 2016 season that we had played at Jim Cooke.
The pitch looked good and the players were certainly up for putting a display on our return and building on from the last three unbeaten games.
Karori arrived and with them ahead of us in the league and clearly confident in taking three points back to Wellington, it was going to be a tough game..
We had a few changes from last week’s team due to work commitment and injury but were confident with the guys coming in and it was up to them to take their opportunity to stake a place in the starting eleven.
The game started with Waikanae on the front foot dominating the play and giving Karori no changes and then suddenly a surprising referee decision gave Karori a free kick on the edge of our box and was duly smashed into the back of the net. Waikanae 0 Karori 1
The response from the players was brilliant putting this set back behind them they stepped up and once again dominated play with crisp passing and moving the ball quickly and smartly. We knew it would only be a matter of time before we got back on level terms and once Francis Jenkins skipped past the full back and delivered an excellent ball along the six yard line with pressure from Cam Manclarke all the defender could do was put the ball into his own net Waikanae1 Karori 1.
This was the score at half time.
Second half was very much as the first with us having lots of the ball and Karori putting all their players behind the ball but pressure and time would eventually tell and when Ben Jones picked the ball up on the edge of the box played a lovely one – two with Cam and then calmly stoked the ball into the bottom corner Waikanae 2 Karori 1.
The second was totally dominated by us but we could not find the third and final goal we were missing half chances. We decided to change personal and Brandyn Pierrire replaced young Francis Jenkins and with his pace chances would happen.
A quick ball from Cam saw Brandyn race past the last defender and as the goalkeeper approached slipped the ball under him in to the back of the net. Waikanae 3 Karori 1
Game over and the boys played out the final minutes with an exhibition of keep ball. A good three points for us and our unbeaten run continues.
Another home fixture next week with Wairarapa visiting Jim Cooke Park