Early surprises in Fiji FACT, new leaders in Tahiti, quarter-final draw in Papua New Guinea and an unbeaten streak ends in New Caledonia. All in this week’s Oceania competitions wrap.
The Fiji Association Cup Tournament (FACT) is now underway after matchday one took place at ANZ Stadium in Suva over the weekend.
There was an early surprise in Group A, as Labasa FC secured a 2-1 win over Rewa FC. Rewa are currently unbeaten in the Digicel Premier League but a 90th-minute goal from Christopher Wasasala secured his brace and the victory.
In Group A’s other fixture, Nadi FC earned a 4-2 triumph over Navua FC. Lautoka FC had a bye.
In Group B, newcomers Tailevu Naitasiri FC have moved to the top of the table after a 2-1 win over Nasinu FC. They also left it late, Ahishek Deo scoring the vital winner in added time. Reigning champions and current Premier League leaders Suva FC beat Ba FC 1-0 courtesy of a Simione Nabenu goal. Nadroga FC were on their bye weekend.
The next round of FACT fixtures take place on Thursday, May 26 with the venue changing to Lawaqa Park in Sigatoka.
In the Digicel Women’s Super League, the top two cemented their dominance with comfortable wins. Table-topping Ba FC beat Tailevu Naitasiri FC 7-0, while second-place Labasa FC secured an 11-0 win over Nadroga FC. Meanwhile, Suva FC and Rewa FC played out a thrilling 3-3 draw.
There has been a twist in the title race in Tahiti, with AS Venus leapfrogging AS Dragon at the top of the table. Dragon were left shellshocked after losing a nine-goal thriller against AS Tefana on Saturday, Viritua Tiaiho’s 67th minute goal securing a 5-4 win.
Venus took full advantage the following day, with goals from Tauhiti Keck and Roonui Tehau enough to secure a 2-1 win over AS Pueu and top spot in Ligue 1 for the time being.
Dragon and Venus face off in two weeks’ time.
Elsewhere, AS Pirae cruised to a 14-0 win over AS Olympic De Mahina and AS Tamarii Temanava were also comfortable winners, defeating AS Excelsior 8-1. AS Central Sport also had a fruitful day in front of goal, winning 5-1 over AS Mataiea while a Tauatua Lucas brace earned AS Tamarii Punaruu a 2-1 victory over AS Tiare Tahiti.
The semi-finals of the Coupe de President also took place over the weekend, with convincing wins for the now confirmed finalists, AS Tiare Hinano and AS Pirae. Hinavainui Malfatti scored five goals as Tiare Hinano beat AS Mira 6-1 whilst Pirae cruised to a 7-1 victory over AS Papara.
The regional round of Papua New Guinea’s Women’s National Conference Soccer League concluded over the weekend, with eight teams qualifying for the quarter-finals.
Mommers FC were declared winners of the Highlands Conference while Bara FC, NCD Hekari United FC and Kiara FC won the Northern, Southern and NGI Conference’s respectively.
Conference winners earn a home tie in the quarter finals with the runners-up from each conference, Hagen FC (Highlands), Poro FC (Northern), NCD FC (Southern) and Hamatana FC (NGI), drawn from two pots to decide the fixtures.
The draw for the quarter-finals of the Women’s National Conference Soccer League is as follows:
NCD Hekari United FC vs Hagen FC
Bara FC vs Hamatana FC
Mommers FC vs Poro FC
Kiara FC vs NCD FC
The quarter-finals will be played on May 28 with the winners advancing to the semi-finals.
In New Caledonia, Tiga Sport’s unbeaten start to the 2022 Super Ligue came to an end this weekend following a 1-1 draw with AS Mont-Dore.
The chasing pack took full advantage, with second place Hienghène Sport earning a 2-1 win over AS Lössi and Dumbéa FC in third beating AS Kunié 3-2.
However, SC Ne Drehu lost ground following a 1-1 draw with Horizon Patho.
In the weekend’s other Super Ligue fixtures, Qanono Sport beat JS Baco 1-0 while AS Magenta and AS Wetr played out a 0-0 draw.