SOLOMONS WIN MOVES THEM BACK INTO FIRST, EQUAL IN POINTS WITH VANUATU

Publié le par OFC Website

The Solomon Islands have moved back into first place – equal in points with Vanuatu – after defeating Tahiti 4-2 in one of the most exciting matches of the tournament so far.
It was a tale of the Solomon’s technical proficiency and skill against Tahiti’s discipline, heart and will-power and both sides were clapped off the field by a standing ovation by both appreciative sets of fans.
The result effectively ends Tahiti’s championship dream but the spirit of their performances and determination has won over fans throughout Suva.
For the Solomon’s the dream lives on and they will be hoping to finish with a flurry of goals in their last game against Tuvalu tomorrow.
Micah Lea’alafa struck first for the Solomon’s in the third minute with a rocket of a shot past Tahiti goalkeeper Rehia Davio.
The tactical awareness of the Tahitian defense was impressive throughout the match and for all the Solomon’s possession they found it difficult to penetrate their back line.
B
ut their speed and skill created an opening for Jenan Kapu in the ninth minute and he put the Solomon’s two up with delicate finish inside the near post.
Tahiti responded in the best way one minute later when a sweeping move was finished off by Matana Bea.
The tension raised a level in the second half with both side aware of what a win would mean to their title chances.
In the 25th minute James Egeta restored the Solomon Islands two goal buffer with a powerful low drive from outside the box.
But once again Tahiti bounced right back and just 30 seconds later Bea had scored his second of the night and the crowd were back to biting their fingernails.
With the one goal lead and 15 minutes to play the Solomon Islands controlled possession and Tahiti formed a brick-like defense closing them down quickly at every opportunity.
As the half wore on Tahiti were forced to throw more numbers forward in search of an equalizer and this created more space for the Solomon Island attackers.
Aft
er a frenetic few minutes with both sides having good chances JackWetney killed the game off in the last minute to jubilant celebrations throughout the Solomon Island camp.
Solomon Island Coach Victor Wai’ia said the Tahitian defence was very hard to break down.
“Tahiti play at the same speed for the full 40 minutes and they are all very fast. I told the boys they would have no chance to slack off.
“They are very well organized in defence and we tried to keep possession in the last 15 minutes to wear them down.”
“We were also well organized today and the team worked very well. We will look into our plan for our final game against Tuvalu tomorrow.”
Tahiti coach Rani Bea said that he was very proud of his side’s determination and commitment tonight.
“Both the players in our squad and the people of Tahiti have terrific spirit and attitude, especially in the small island of Rapa where it is truly exceptional.
“We had nothing to lose towards the end of the match and so we pushed the goalkeeper up and played with five up. W
e tried everything we could.
“We know our team does not have the most skillful individual players here but we play with heart and are very technical in defence. We haven’t conceded a lot of goals in any match at this tournament.”
“We have ten players on the same level and this has helped us.”
In the last games  of the day, New Zealand beat New Caledonia 3-2 and Fiji beat easily Tuvalu 13-3.

Rank

Team

Points

Played

W

D

L

GF

GA

GD

1

Vanuatu

12

6

4

 

1

28

6

+22

3

Solomon Islands

12

6

4

 

1

29

19

+10

2

Tahiti

10

6

3

1

1

19

11

+8

4

New Zealand

9

6

3

 

2

21

12

+9

5

New Caledonia

4

6

1

1

4

22

30

-8

6

Fiji

6

6

2

 

3

27

30

-3

7

Tuvalu

0

6

 

 

6

7

45

-38

The programme of Saturday :
14h00 – 2.00 pm : Vanuatu – Tahiti
16h00 – 4.00 pm : Tuvalu – Solomon Islands
18h00 – 6.00 pm : New Zealand - Fiji

Publié dans Futsal & Beach Soccer

Commenter cet article