Win keeps Thistle on top of table

With Queens Park having the bye at the weekend, McIntyre Dick Thistle FC had the opportunity to extend its lead at the top of the table against Kowhai Roofing Waihopai.

Two goals in the opening 45 minutes from Omoyajowo and Castrillo respectively and a Sheraan Mohammed on the 80-minute mark was enough for Thistle to maintain the top spot heading into the bye this weekend.

In the other Donald Gray fixture, Laser Plumbing Gore Wanderers beat Southern Steel Windows Old Boys AFC 3-1 to register their first points of the campaign and keep Old Boys winless after week two of the competition.

At Level One this week, Queens Park entertain Old Boys at Surrey Park, while Gore welcome Waihopai out at Gore, both kicking off at 3pm.

In the Kolk Cup, iHire Thistle FC put 14 past Malloch McClean Waihopai, and Wyndham Town and Pacific Radiology Old Boys AFC fought out a 2-2 stalemate, Thistle are in pole position after two games in the women’s premier competition.

In this Saturday’s fixtures, Winton face Wyndham out at Winton, Thistle head to Southend, Waihopai entertain Gore with Old Boys having the bye. All matches kick off at 1pm.

In the women’s South Island qualifying league, Queens Park AFC fell to a narrow 3-2 defeat at the hands of Otago University AFC in Dunedin.

It was a tightly fought contest with University managing to get a crucial third goal on the 63-minute mark, and Park unable to find an equalizer as the clock ticked down.

Despite the defeat, Park should remain upbeat as University are a league frontrunner and this was Park’s first away fixture in the league.

Park get a break before welcoming Green Island to the ILT Turf on May 4.

In the SPL, a Calem Castle goal in the fourth minute was enough to take all three points against Queenstown at a very picturesque Frankton Events Centre on Saturday.

An injury to usual number one Jaden Castle, handed Nick Edwards his first cap between the sticks and he produced a faultless display to ensure Queens Park kept a clean sheet to make up for last week’s loss to University.

Park certainly had the better of the opening 45 minutes, and despite chances for both sides, were worthy of the lead at the break after an unusually quick start out of the blocks from the Invercargill men.

Queenstown definitely stepped it up in the second half, but Park were equal to the task and despite Queenstown having a few opportunities to restore parity, Park were dangerous on the counter and could have scored more.

All in all, despite a strong finish from the home side, the three points for Park were well deserved and capped off a good team performance despite some forced changes to the Park starting line-up.

Queenstown captain William King said his side gave away a sloppy goal early. In the second half they were building and building but just could not get the goal they were pushing for.

"We definitely had the better of the game in the second half.”

Park coach Paddy Murphy said over the 90 minutes his side was the better team.

" We missed a lot of chances in the first half, some poor decision making up front. Sometimes you have to win ugly, and I think that was a bit ugly at times. We battled to keep the clean sheet near the end there but this early in the season you’ll take the three points.”

 - By Chris Montgomery