|Capital Football 2017 Photo Dr Yomcat Shoots (Michael Welsh)|
Capital 1 Central 0
National Women's League
Saturday 25th October 2017
Attendance : 150ish
This game was round three of the National League and despite it only being Capital's second game (and their first at home) it is almost the half way point of this short one round, seven team league! It is frustrating for fans players and coaches alike, we have the ridiculous situation where Capital's preseason is just as long as the actual season itself! Hopefully the talk of a two round league starting next season will come to fruition.
This game saw two teams who may very well be sick of the site of each other, they have played twice in preseason, while the majority of Capital players are from the W-League clubs Wellington United and Upper Hutt City, and the majority of players (and coach) for Central come from fellow W-League club Palmerston North Marist, meaning this was about the 10th time this year some of these players will have come up against each other!
Capital had started the season with a narrow 2-1 loss away to Auckland, a team that on paper looks like the best in the league. Central had been hammered 5-1 by Northern, before overcoming a much improved Southern United side 3-1 last week. This was the 17th meeting of these two teams since the National Women's League was started back in 2002. Of the 16 previous games, Central had only won two to Capital's seven, while seven were draws. This has become a traditionally close fixture with seven of the last eight league meeting resulting in a draw or a win to Capital by a margin of one.
|Things you don't expect to see at the football #43 - Micky Robertson penalised for high feet! Dr Yomcat Shoots|
Capital had a few changes from last season having lost Mikela Hunt and Emily Morison to Southern United, Briar Palmer to France, as well as Tessa McPherson and keeper Anna Whitman-Wenzel to injury. While they have gained Libby Boobyer (ex Central & Northern), University's Rosie Wild and returning player, former Football Fern, Sarah Gregorius. Central had lost Mikela Boxall who has gone off to play Futsal and goal scoring machine TJ Lynne-Lewis.
It was a fantastically hot day more becoming of sometime in the middle of February in Nelson rather than the end of spring in Wellington. Capital Football's twitter account did the best to attract more people down with tweets to the likes of ex Phoenix player Ben Sigmund, journalist Jason Pine and best of all new Prime Minister, Jacinda Arden! (unfortunately none of them turned up).
Capital dominated the early part of the game, Maya Hahn putting the ball over the bar after about 10 minutes. But while they enjoyed more of the possession and territory they were unable to break down the high pressing defence of Central. Sarah Gregorius did get the ball in to the net just before half time but it was ruled out for offside.
|Sarah Gregorius shoots (and scores but it was offside) The JourneyFan|
Nine minutes in to the second half seems an odd time to make a substitution when its not injury related, but it's what both teams did and it was Capital's, replacing Michela Robertson with Maggie Jenkins, that paid off, as a minute later Libby Boobyer tore down the left flank and pulled a cross back to Jenkins on the edge of the penalty area and she slammed it into the top of the net with her first touch of the game.
Central started to come back into the game after this and probably should have at least equalised but Cushla Litchwark in the Capital goal was on outstanding form with several good saves. The one time the ball did get past Litchwark, when there were only a couple of minutes to go, Libby Boobyer was on hand to make an acrobatic clearance of the line and ensure the win and points went to Capital.
|Maggie Jenkins scores with her first touch Dr Yomcat Shoots (Michael Welsh)|
Capital's next game is on Sunday (5th Nov) away to WaiBOP (1:30pm KO @ John Kerkoff Park, Cambridge) and their next home game is on Saturday 11th November, 12pm KO @ Petone Memorial against defending champions Canterbury United Pride.