Cashmere Technical a ‘perfect’ test as Chatham Cup final looms for United

Eddie Wilkinson prepares to put boot to ball in Christchurch United’s 5-0 win over FC Twenty 11....
Eddie Wilkinson prepares to put boot to ball in Christchurch United’s 5-0 win over FC Twenty 11. Photo: Jim Watts Photography
Christchurch United will have one eye on the Chatham Cup final when they take on rivals Cashmere Technical in the last round of the Southern League on Sunday.

With the league title already secured, United coach Paul Ifill, 43, said the clash against second-placed Technical will be the “perfect” game to test them ahead of the national final against Melville the following weekend.

“I wouldn’t say Tech and Melville play the same, but there’s definitely some similarities between them,” Ifill said.

United go into the match after two clinical wins against Green Island and FC Twenty 11 within three days.

An eight-goal scoring spree from Sam Philip saw United record a spectacular 15-3 win against Green Island on Sunday before a dominant second half led United to a 5-0 win over FC Twenty 11 on Tuesday night.

Ifill was not happy United let in three goals against Green Island, but said the FC Twenty 11  game was a great opportunity for the club’s youth to shine.

“I think it’s been a full squad effort this season,” he said.

“We’ve got a lot of young players coming through who have done really well.”

Christchurch United coach and former Crystal Palace forward Paul Ifill, 43, came on to score one...
Christchurch United coach and former Crystal Palace forward Paul Ifill, 43, came on to score one of their five goals against FC Twenty 11. Photo: Jim Watts Photography.
The former Crystal Palace and Wellington Phoenix forward made a 15min cameo appearance against FC Twenty 11, scoring a goal in his first Southern League match of the year.

“It was a last minute decision as we were really stretched. It was either me or my manager and he had already taken one for the team earlier this year.”

Ifill expects to field a near full-strength team for the Cashmere Technical clash.

“I will likely play a side close to the team who will play the cup final,” he said.

“I think it’s the perfect game to have before the final.”

United striker Sam Philip and Technical’s Garbhan Coughlan are set to play off for the league’s golden boot. Philip currently leads the race with 29 goals, while Coughlan has 28.

Regardless of the result, Ifill said there will be a short celebration to mark the Southern League win on Sunday.

“We will pick up the trophy after the game and have a quick celebration before next week,” he said.

With almost all of the final standings confirmed, few matches on Sunday will have any effect on the ladder.

Ferrymead Bays will be fighting for a win against Green Island to finish in the top four. They will rely on Dunedin City Royals beating third placed Coastal Spirit in Sunnyvale. Coastal will want to end their promising season, which included beating Technical to secure the Hurley Challenge  Shield, with a dominant win away from home. 

Nomads have the opportunity to finish sixth with a win over Selwyn United. 

Their confidence will be high following their comfortable 4-1 win over Nelson Suburbs last week. FC Twenty 11, who are set to be relegated from the league next season, will aim to end their season on a positive note against Nelson Suburbs on Sunday.

Southern League (Sunday, 1.30pm)

  • Christchurch United v Cashmere Technical, United Sports Centre; Nelson Suburbs v FC Twenty 11, Saxton Fields (Nelson); Selwyn United v Nomads, Foster Park; Ferrymead Bays v Green Island, Ferrymead Bays; Dunedin City Royals v Coastal Spirit, Sunnyvale (Dunedin).


  • Christchurch United 49, Cashmere Technical 39, Coastal Spirit 31, Dunedin City Royals 26, Ferrymead Bays 26, Nelson Suburbs 22, Nomads 20, Green Island 16, Selwyn United 10, FC Twenty 11 6.

Women’s South Island League

  • Coastal Spirit v Dunedin City Royals, Saturday 12.30pm, English Park.


  • Cashmere Technical 28 (10), Dunedin City Royals 19 (9), Coastal Spirit 16 (8), Otago University 10 (9), University of Canterbury 4 (10), Nelson Suburbs 4 (10).