Another bumper NPL Tasmania weekend has come and gone. Let’s not waste anytime and get into it!


FEATURE MATCH

Devonport Strikers  2 (Eddie Bidwell, Brody Denehey)  Kingborough Lions 0       at Valley Rd.

Smiles all round the Strikers players and supporters after Eddie Bidwell’s goal. Photo credit : Tanner Coad

Devonport are well and truely back in the championship mix taking care of one of their contenders for the crown Kingborough Lions 2-0   at The Portress, Valley Rd.

The home side went in full strength as always with The fox in the box Miles Barnard leading the line linking up with the duo of Charles and Eddie Bidwell down the flanks,

Team news saw some big outs for the travelling side with Ben Hamlett and Andrew Taylor both not available so there went their key attackers and midfield. Coach Jez Kenth was also unable to travel and Cameron Ellis took charge for only his second NPL game. Ellis is a current assistant coach with the club.

It was a very scrappy affair in the first-half with neither team having a real advantage. Devonport should be commended for their defensive structure with Raphael Reynolds leading the line, every-time Lions tried to make space down the flanks they were met with two-on-one challenges giving Keenan Douce and Kenneth Trac zero room to make any successful attacking play.

Kingborough did have the set-piece count to 5 and over at the end of the half but efforts from Douce and Kobe Kemp were not on target which proved to be a big blow for their chances to snatch a result.

Eddie Bidwell right on kickoff of the second-half launched a hopeful shot which landed over the head of Lions keeper Lee Mackie which sent the home fans in ruptures.

Lions captain Keenan Douce prepares to take his corner kick with their travelling WSL side watching in the background. Lions went down 4-2 in the WSL in what was a terrific contest. Photo credit : Tanner Coad

Kingborough were locked down with every attacking play they tried to muster continuing to press hard giving the hopeful away side no room for scoring.

Lions keeper Lee Mackie punches away a shot while Byungtae Ahn tries to avoid his fist. Photo credit : Tanner Coad
Mackie saves to the right but was unable to get his footing back in time for Denehey to tap in the rebound. Photo credit : Tanner Coad

Byungtae Ahn was given a straight red for pulling down his opponent in the box and being the last defender. Ahn was hesitant to go off but eventually left the pitch. Up stepped Brody Denehey who’s penalty was saved away by Mackie but Denehey had the last laugh, picking up the pieces and tapping home before Mackie could return to his feet in what was the killer blow.

 


Olympia Warriors   1 (Joseph Mwarabu)       South Hobart   4 (Jacob Lancaster, Sam Berezansky, Bradley Lakoslejac, Luke Bighin)

South’s Nick Morton and Ewan Sloan in action. Photo credit : Walter Pless

South Hobart have come from behind to knock off Eastern Shore rivals Olympia Warriors 4-1 at Warrior Park in what is a huge leap for their title hopes as the race for the premiership goes up another level.

Olympia scored in the opening minutes through Joseph Mwarabu who hit true just outside the box past Nick O Connell in what was a surprise to the travelling South Hobart.

Kyle Vincent and Luke Bighin. Photo credit: Walter Pless

Jacob Lancaster quickly chalked off the Warriors lead after getting onto Nick Morton’s corner which as you could imagine rallied up South as they knew a draw would not be good enough.

Kasper Hallam weaved his way around the Olympia defence to send in a low ball to Sam Berezansky who had no trouble finishing past the keeper giving the away side a deserved lead.

Tobias Herweynen and Joel Sammut. Photo credit : Walter Pless
Bradley Lakoseljac and Joel Sammut in action. Photo credit : Walter Pless

Bradley Lakoseljac was the next to make his mark hitting with sheer power into the bottom right. Defender Luke Bighin finished the day scoring the fourth, again with another assist from Hallam.

A huge win for South as they march to the top, only leading on goal difference but still undefeated with Glenorchy Knights on level points.


Riverside Olympic 2 (TBC)  Clarence Zebras (Dwayne Walsh, Riley Dillon)   2 at Windsor Park

Riverside threw away a 2-0 lead to succumb to a 2-2 draw with Clarence Zebras at Windsor Park. Riverside had a 2-0 lead at the break but Dwayne Walsh and Riley Dillon soon levelled proceedings.

Matthew Pace was sent off in the later stages for the travelling Zebras but they somehow managed to hold on for a deserved point on the road.


Glenorchy Knights  5 (OG, Nick Mearns x2, C Smith, Thomas Bellini)   Launceston City 0 at KGV, Glenorchy

Glenorchy Knights continued their undefeated ways dismantling Launceston City 5-0 on a cold Saturday afternoon at KGV.

Knights gained the early lead through an own goal which also saw Nick Mearns pick up another brace. Smith and Thomas Bellini finished off the day in what was a huge romp over a shellshocked City.

Behind on only goal difference but level on points with South, the title race could still go anyones way and at the moment South and Glenorchy are the front runners.

 

Tanner Coad
tannercoad@me.com
FNR's Tasmanian correspondent covering the NPL TAS and A-League. Also write for Football Tasmania and Beyond 90 {W-League}. Has a strong belief in creativity and strives to tell the stories behind the captured image.