Chatham Cup Last 16 - 2nd Half

Palmerston North Marist 2 
North Wellington 3
Chatham Cup Round 4
Memorial Park
Palmerston North
Sunday 17th July 2016
Attendance about 100

The second half of my trip involved another visit to Memorial Park, but this time the Memorial Park was in Palmerston North. I thought I had seen NZ beat Fiji 5-0 at this ground in 1993, but when I got there realised it wasn't the one I was thinking off. This ground has long been associated with football in the Manawatu, photographer Grant Stantiall told me of going to the ground in the 70's with his dad to see Manawatu United v Stop Out in the National League and the crowd being around 3000. The game was being played on Sunday in an effort to attract more people, but it seems the Manawatu Standard didn't get the memo and hadn't even mentioned the game, so the crowd of about 100 was a little disappointing. But for me it was great as I got to see two Chatham Cup games over the weekend and a new ground.

Palmerston North Marist were formed in 1988 and these days since the demise of the National League side Youngheart Manawatu, find themselves as the top team in the Manawatu region. In the Chatham Cup they reached the Semi-Final's in 2004 and went one better in 2005 reaching the final losing 2-1 to Central United. This season they have beaten New Plymouth Rangers 3-0 & Island Bay United 4-2 to get to this stage of the cup.

North Wellington had beaten Seatoun 7-0, Kapiti Coast United 1-0 & Upper Hutt City 5-1 (link) so far, this was the first time they have come up against a team from a higher division than them.

The two clubs have only ever met each other twice before, both Chatham Cup games in 1993 & 1998, North Wellington won 5-0 & 3-0 respectively. Those times North Wellington were the team in the higher divisions.

Josh Margetts puts PN Marist 1-0 up
Both teams like to play attacking football and it took PN Marist just 8 minutes to open the scoring when Josh Margett's scored from a free kick from just outside the area. They had the ball in the back of the net again 8 minutes later, but the flag had been raised for offside. Marist were controlling the game and were surprised in the 34th minute when North Wellington attacked down the right flank and Kieran Cripps scored a superb diving header to level up the scores. Just before half time PN Marist hit the post. The score could have easily been 3-1 to PN Marist and that would have been a reasonable fair reflection of how the first half had gone.
North Wellington's Kieran Cripps levels the scores with a diving header

I'm not sure what North Wellington player-coach Peter Howe, or his father Charlie Howe, who was on the bench helping out said at half time but it worked. North Wellington came out looking a different team and obviously sticking to a game plan. They were helped by getting a penalty in the 1st minute of the half which Kieran Cripps scored to make it 2-1. 10 minutes later they extended the lead to 3-1 when a ball from the by line found Shohei Wantanabe's head and landed in the goal. It was now North Wellington's turn to control the game and they looked comfortable it was only in the last 10 minutes that PN Marist seemed to wake up to the fact that they could be going out of the cup and really started pushing forward. They were rewarded in the 84th minute when Robbie Yule headed the ball in from a corner, it led to a frantic last 5 minutes but it was a case of too little too late for PN Marist and North Wellington held on for a deserved win.

So 2 games over 2 days, 11 goals, 2 sending's off, 1 cup upset, 378km traveled a pretty good weekend I'd say.

Big ups to Grant Stantiall who lent me his EF70-200ml lens for photos, much appreciated and you can see the photos here