RAROTONGA – A tenacious performance from a brave Matavera FC ensured Takuvaine had to work hard for their 3-2 win at the Takuvaine Valley Field in Cook Islands Football Association (CIFA) Round Cup action last week.
Bottom-placed Matavera FC were a thorn in Takuvaines sides as there unwavering determination made up for their technical flaws and unsettled the more highly fancied Takuvaine.
Matavera FC were rewarded for their fast-paced start to the match when they took the lead after 10 minutes from the penalty spot. But, as ever for team’s struggling at the wrong end of the table, they were quickly in trouble when Takuvaine won and converted a penalty of their own within minutes.
Takuvaine became increasingly frustrated as Matavera foiled several goal attempts thanks to Mataveras hardworking back John Pareanga and goal keeper Morning Winnie.
Takuvaine coach Kevin Holt delivered a stinging broadside to his team at the break.
"I told them to stop over playing and start showing the class and quality that has made us top of the table so far this season," Holt said.
Holt’s words certainly worked as Takuvaine started their second half with a well worked goal within seconds of the restart.
Matavera FC kept up their dogged pursuit and Takuvaine’s 2-1 lead looked precarious at the best of times during the second-half.
Takuvaine’s nervous disposition seemed sure to encourage opportunities for Matavera FC and it wasn’t long before a chance materialised for Cook Islands struggling club.
What looked like a botched cross kick from Mataveras Pakia Willie turned into an awe-inspiring goal, the ball overshooting its intended destination – a clutch of players in the box – and ending up in the back of Takuvaine’s net to make it 2-2, much to the delight of their cheering fans who sensed an the possibility of an impending upset.
Takuvaine were rattled by events and sparked into attacking action and the test for Matavera FC would be whether they could hang on and secure a desperately needed point.
There was to be no relief, though, as a classy solo effort by Takuvaine youngster Sema Robati late in the match finally broke Matavera hearts.
There were scenes of relief amongst the Takuvaine players upon the final whistle and although Matavera FC ended up beaten there was enough encouragement based on this stirring performance to suggest they may yet climb higher in the table.
– Matariki Wilson and OFC Media and Communications
– For the latest sports news from Rarotonga please visit www.cinews.co.ck
CIFA ROUND CUP results Saturday 13 September 2008
Tupapa vs. Arorangi 7-0
Takuvaine vs. Matavera FC 3-2
Nikao Sokattak vs. Titikaveka 6-1
Tupapa vs. Arorangi 0-2
Takuvaine vs. Matavera 2-0
Nikao Sokattak vs. Titikaveka 1-1
Tupapa vs Arorangi-Under 14 Girls 1-0, Under 13 Boys 0-2, Under 16 boys 4-0, Senior B Men 4-0.
Takuvaine vs Matavera Under 13 Boys 1-1, Under 16 Boys 3-0, Senior B Men 3-2.
Nikao vs Titikaveka-Under 14 Girls 2-0, Under 13 Boys 9-0, Under 16 boys 2-0, Senior B Men 2-0.