Manukau Courier : February 14th 2014
8 MANUKAU COURIER, FEBRUARY 14, 2014 SPORT www.manukaucourier.co.nz Play like they belong By ALAN APTED Auckland United players have been told their inexperience in the ASB Youth League will no longer be accepted as an excuse for losing. That’s the word from manager Mauricio Rojas as he prepares his side for their second-round clash against Hawke’s Bay at Bluewater Stadium in Napier tomorrow. ‘ They’ve played enough games now to know they belong in this league manager Mauricio Rojas ’ The Colombian told his players the excuse was wearing thin and it’s time for them to stand tall and play like they belonged. His rev-up follows their 4-2 loss to Waitakere City at Fred Taylor Park in Whenuapai last Sunday. It was a reversal of their 3-1 win against Waitakere in their league debut match on January 12. The loss was disappointing because three days earlier they were riding high after a handy 3-1 victory overs Wanderers at home at Centre Park in Mangere. Auckland United slipped to fourth in the standings with the hiccup against Waitakere, with Waikato/Bay of Plenty a point ahead in third place and Waitakere two points better in second place. Undefeated defending cham- Introducing Fairfax Marketing Services: The full circle marketing solution for ADWORDS PREMIER SME PARTNER pions Auckland City top the league on 18 points, eight clear of their nearest rivals. Rojas says his team has some catching up to do and is asking his team to throw off the shackles, starting with Hawke’s Bay tomorrow. ‘‘Players should not be afraid anymore. They’ve played enough games now to know they belong in this league. It’s time to start playing to their potential. ‘‘Hawke’s Bay will be a good Stand up: Shuiab Khan and his team mates have been asked by their coach Auckland Mauricio Rojas to play like they belong in the ASB Youth League. Photo: PHOTOTEK place to start. They’re a very physical side as we found out in 1-1 draw in the first round. They’ll be even tougher at home. ‘‘It’s important that we mini- mise our mistakes and make the most of our chances.’’ A win over Hawke’s Bay would be a fillip with Auckland United taking on the unbeaten Auckland City in their next match at the Croatian Cultural Centre in Te Atatu next Sunday. Scoreboard Auckland United 3 Wanderers 1 (played on Waitangi Day). Waitakere 4 Auckland United 2 Points: After seven of 10 rounds, Auckland City 18, Waitakere 10, Waikato/Bay of Plenty 9, Auckland United 8, Wanderers 3, Hawke’s Bay 2. Draw: Hawke’s Bay v Auckland United, Bluewater Stadium, Napier. February 15. Start: 3pm Women wave Otahuhu flag SCOREBOARD By ALAN APTED Winning the plate playoffs is the goal of Otahuhu’s struggling premier men’s softball team with the season’s end just around the corner. The team, in its first year back at the top level, is struggling for credibility and lies second last in the standings. It’s the same story for the club’s Local Leads. Real Results. Business Websites Mobile Search Engine Optimisation Email Marketing Social Media men’s reserve team as the difficulty of the journey to become a top softball side hits home. But despite all of the defeats and the heartache, the men have their eyes fixed on their premier women’s team for heart. For years they were the easybeats of the premier women’s competition but not any more. They won the Auckland championship last year and have designs on defending it and going one better and winning the national club title this year. ‘‘It’s has been a trying season Search Engine Ads Reputation Management Business Listings Newspaper Ads Online Ads p 0800 123 664 e firstname.lastname@example.org w fairfaxmarketingservices.co.nz for our two men’s teams but our women are a constant reminder that it can be done,’’ premier men’s manager Jamie Brear says. ‘‘We’re disappointed with our results but we can’t lose sight of our goal to become the best team in Auckland. Draws: Premier men: Northcote v Otahuhu, Rosedale Park. Februry 15. Start: 4pm. Points: Auckland United 24, Waitakere Bears 24, Mt Albert Ramblers 22, Northcote 22, Roosters 16, Howick 14, Eden-Roskill 10, Otahuhu 8, Marist 4. Premier men’s reserves: Northcote v Otahuhu, Rosedale Park. February 15. Start: 2pm. Points: Mt Albert Ramblers 30, Roosters 26, Auckland United 26, Howick 20. Otahuhu 8 (9th) Premier women: Otahuhu v Marist, Sturges Park, Otahuhu. February 15. Start: 1.30pm. Otahuhu v Melville, Sturges Park, Otahuhu. February 15. Start 3.30pm. Points: Western Magpies 28, Otahuhu 24, Waitakere Bears 20, Mt Albert Ramblers 18, Howick 10, Melville 8, Marist 6, Hibiscus Coast 4. ‘‘It will take time but we must be patient.’’ Brear says with nothing to play for the focus has been on development. ‘‘We have three rounds left in the season and will use that to expose our younger players to as much top level softball as we can. They’re finding out what it takes to play at this level.’’ Brear says Otahuhu will con- sider the season a success if they can get up and win the Auckland club champion’s plate competition. Otahuhu were tipped out of the Marist Club’s Brother Patrick Tournament at Simpson Reserve in Penrose last weekend without winning a game. But they featured in perhaps the most thrilling game of the tournament, one that went to an extra six innings to decided. It took three hours and 15 minutes before Eden Roskill broke the deadlock for an 8-7 win. Brear says it had the crowd absorbed. It was disappointing to lose it in the end but a thrill be be part of. Otahuhu’s premier reserve and premier men face Northcote at Rosedale Park tomorrow at 2pm and 4pm. It will be a replay of their match in the Brother Patrick Tournament. Northcote won that match 8-0. The premier women’s team have a double header against Marist and Melville at Sturges Park in Otahuhu tomorrow at 1.30pm and 3pm. Otahuhu are running second to the Western Magpies and are four points clear of the Waitakere Bears and can ill-afford a slip up against tailenders Marist and Melville.
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