The second year of the inter-association clash between the NSFA Women’s Select and MWFA Women’s Select took place last night at Cromer Park, with the MWFA side securing a 3-0 win.
After winning the inaugural fixture last year, played at Charles Bean Oval in Lindfield, the MWFA looked to set the pace early in this year’s contest, seeking to put NSFA goalkeeper Holly Walker (North Sydney United) under some early pressure.
However a tenacious rearguard effort led by the likes of Holly Burgmann (Northbridge) and Clara Delavere (Lindfield) saw the visitors deny the opposition clear chances, as they looked to make a breakthrough of their own through the speed of wingers Sonia Faragher (North Sydney) and Brittany Austin (Northbridge).
Unfortunately, the home side would take the lead in the latter stages of the first half, with the referee awarding a penalty that was duly dispatched into the bottom right corner of the goal.
The NSFA Select were determined to find an equaliser before the interval, but Amy Clarke (Lane Cove) saw her long-range drive palmed out for a corner before the MWFA goalkeeper again produced a good save to deny Linda Carroll (Northbridge).
The home side started faster after the half-time break and doubled their advantage within minutes of the restart. A swift counter down the left flank left the NSFA defence retreating, and despite an initial save from Walker, and a goal-line clearance by Burgmann, the MWFA side were able to put the ball in the net at the third time of asking.
Despite some strong play in the second half, in particular a swashbuckling performance in the midfield from Emma Hannigan (Northbridge), the NSFA Select could not find a way onto the scoresheet as the opposition defence held firm.
This concerted push towards goal created another opening for the fleet-footed MWFA attack as they picked up a third goal from a counter-attack in the closing stages to seal the result.
Although they didn’t secure the win, NSFA Select coach Eilidh Mackay paid tribute to her players for their peformance.
“It was certainly tough conditions for our players out there, especially conceding a goal towards the end of the first half,” she said.
“It was a very even first half and I think we were unlucky not to go into the break.
“We had some good chances but their goalkeeper was in top form and we just couldn’t find a way through.”
“However it has been a fantastic experience bringing the players from across our association together for this game, as well as our trial match against Northern Tigers last week,” she added,
“Everyone has really embraced the opportunity to represent NSFA women’s football and I hope we can return stronger next year!”
2019 Women’s Select Squad: Amy Clarke (Lane Cove), Katherine Arconati (North Sydney United), Jamie Ware (North Sydney United), Holly Walker (North Sydney United), Sonia Faragher (North Sydney United), Clara Delavere (Lindfield), Georgia Swinton (Lindfield), Nicola Forbe-Smith (Lindfield), Holly Burgmann (Northbridge), Linda Carroll (Northbridge), Dorothy Poon (Northbridge), Brittany Austin (Northbridge), Emma Hannigan (Northbridge), Anna Pienaar (Northbridge), Xanthe Muston (Northbridge)