The 2019 NSFA winter season officially concludes this weekend with our NSFA Cups and Shields Finals. This year, for the first time, the 6 finals will be held over 2 days at 2 different venues. On Saturday we are at Charles Bean Sportsfield for the NSFA Cup at 2:00pm, followed by the Rick Close Cup at 4:30pm. On Sunday we head to NTRA synthetic for 4 finals. The Treasurer’s Shield starts the day at 10:00am with the President’s Shield finishing the day’s activities at 3:00pm.
NSFA CUP – SATURDAY 2:00PM
The 52nd NSFA Cup pits Premier League clubs Willoughby Dalleys and Chatswood Rangers against each other on Saturday at Charles Bean. In Premier League, Willoughby Dalleys finished the season in second place while Chatswood Rangers just missed out on the finals. Matches between them were close with a draw in the annual Jim McBreen Cup match and a narrow 3-2 win to Dalleys in the return. These Willoughby City council derbies are generally hard-fought affairs and today should be no different.
Rangers has previously won the Cup 4 times with the last coming in 2015. Dalleys on the other hand has won twice before, in 1994 and 1997. The 1997 win came at this very ground in one of the best cup finals in NSFA history.
RICK CLOSE CUP – SATURDAY 4:30PM
The 21st edition of this tournament, named after West Pymble legend and driving force for this cup Rick Close, sees North Sydney United take on Lane Cove. North Sydney are chasing their fourth consecutive win and fifth overall and Lane Cove is hoping to pick up its first.
These teams played in the Over 35 Division 1 competition in 2019. They met each other 3 times this season, swapping 5-3 wins in the home-and-away matches, and Lane Cove finishing on top 4-3 in the semi-final. In the 2018 edition North Sydney came from 2-1 down with ten minutes remaining to snatch a 3-2 win so with 23 goals in the 3 matches this year this final is shaping up as another thriller.
TREASURER’S SHIELD – SUNDAY 10:00AM
The 40th Treasurer’s Shield final sees 2 foundation clubs in Lindfield and West Pymble in action. Lindfield is the most successful club in this tournament with 7 wins (the last in 2015), while surprisingly West Pymble has never won this title.
Both teams played in the Under 14 Super League in 2019. Lindfield finished the season in second place while West Pymble finished in the bottom 3 but the 2 matches in which they played each other were close, high-scoring contests. Lindfield won both 4-2 and 7-4, however they were 3-1 down at half time in the second game.
West Pymble’s finishing position belies their ability as their victory over premiers North Sydney at North Sydney Oval attests. Lindfield were the other team to defeat North Sydney in the league, also knocking them out of this competition so we should expect a very entertaining match.
VICE-PRESIDENT’S SHIELD – SUNDAY 11:30AM
The only thing certain about this year’s final is that the Lindfield club will win its fifth Treasurer’s Shield! The 40th final sees the 15A’s take on the 16A’s. There is no 2019 form to talk about but the 15A’s did defeat the 2019 Under 16 Super League premiers Hornsby Heights to reach this final and finished as premiers of Super League. The 16A’s finished fourth in Under 16 Super League and played Hornsby Heights four times during the season without defeating them. However, all 4 matches were close with the round 11 win of 3-1 the only one that wasn’t decided by one goal. Intra-club rivalry is often stronger than inter-club rivalry so we can expect that both teams will not want to lose to the other, leading to very competitive encounter.
GWFC GIRLS UNDER 18 SHIELD – SUNDAY 1:00PM
Today is the 5th year this tournament has been contested with a different victorious club each year. This final sees Northbridge A take on Lindfield G. These teams played in different divisions in 2018 so there is no head-to-head form.
Northbridge were 3rd in Division 1 while Lindfield G finished second in Division 2 as Lindfield Y. Both teams scored over 60 goals and conceded over 30 in their respective competitions in 2019 so a high-scoring match is a definite possibility.
The Northbridge club won this title last year, so they are looking to be the first club to win it twice. Lindfield on the other would love to win the club’s first and help Lindfield to clean sweep of Sunday’s finals.
PRESIDENT’S SHIELD – SUNDAY 3:00PM
The final match of the weekend is the 42nd President’s Shield final between Lindfield B and North Sydney United. Playing as Lindfield A and North Sydney United A respectively in Under 18 Super League these teams finished first and second. They met twice during the season with Lindfield victorious in both, but they are both fine teams and a close, thrilling match is expected. Lindfield has won this tournament 6 times, more than any other club. Interestingly, North Sydney United has never won this Shield in its 10 seasons as a club, nor any other junior Shield so they will be desperate to make this one its first.
We wish all participating teams and supporters the best of luck and we look forward to 6 great games of football.
Written by Damian Miles – NSFA Competitions Manager