The top two in Tahiti will face off for the title on the final day of the season, New Zealand’s Chatham Cup champions cruise through and we have new leaders in Fiji in this week’s Oceania competitions wrap.
In Tahiti, AS Dragon and AS Pirae will face off in a potential Ligue 1 decider next weekend after title rivals AS Vénus slipped up at home.
Dragon crushed AS Tiare Tahiti 7-1, but Venus could only muster a 1-1 draw with fourth-placed AS Tefana. That now makes AS Pirae the only challengers to Dragon in top spot. They defeated AS Pueu 3-0 to move into second-place, two points behind the leaders.
Dragon and Pirae face off on July 15 and if Dragon avoid defeat they will win the league. A win for Pirae will see them claim a sensational title victory while Vénus’ title hopes are gone, by way of Dragon and Pirae facing each other on the final day ensuring one of those teams are guaranteed to finish higher.
At the other end of the table, AS Excelsior have joined AS Mataiea in being relegated to Ligue 2 following their 2-0 loss to AS Tamarii Punaruu.
The exciting action in Ligue 1 follows last weekend’s Coupe de Polynésie semi-finals, with Vénus and Dragon advancing after comfortable wins over Pueu and AS Taiarapu FC respectively. The two rivals will face off in the final on July 23 with the winner earning the opportunity to compete in France’s 2022-23 Coupe de France.
New Zealand’s domestic cup competitions continued over the weekend, with the men’s quarter-finals now set and the final four in the women’s cup also confirmed.
In the Chatham Cup, reigning champions Cashmere Technical recovered from their wobble in the previous round to crush Green Island AFC and reach the final eight. Last year’s runners-up, Miramar Rangers AFC, also cruised through to the quarters, sweeping aside Western Suburbs 5-1. Wellington Olympic were also impressive in victory, defeating 2019 champions Napier City Rovers AFC 4-0.
Elsewhere, Auckland City FC, Dunedin City Royals FC, Hamilton Wanderers and Waiheke United AFC edged through. Birkenhead United AFC or Eastern Suburbs AFC will round out the quarter-finals but their game this weekend was postponed due to COVID-19 related issues.
In the NZ Football Foundation Kate Sheppard Cup, Auckland United FC put down a marker with a 4-0 win over first-time participants Tauranga City AFC to move into the final four. They will be joined by Dunedin City Royals, who beat Cashmere Technical 3-1 after extra time, Palmerston North Marist FC and Northern Rovers FC in the semi-finals.
New Caledonia’s top two continue to dominate in the Super Ligue. Leaders Tiga Sport romped to a 7-0 win over JS Baco while Hienghène Sport stayed one point behind them in second with a hard-fought 2-1 triumph over SC Ne Drehu.
AS Magenta lead the chasing pack in third following a 2-1 win over Qanono Sports while Kunié and AS Wetr also picked up wins. AS Mont-Dore and Horizon Sport drew 2-2.
In Fiji, Rewa FC have moved to the top of the Digicel Premier League standings, at least for the time being. The Delta Tigers had to work hard to beat Tailevu Naitasiri 2-1 to move ahead of Suva FC at the top of the table. Suva, however, have a game in hand after their weekend clash with Labasa FC was postponed.
There was a shock elsewhere, as third-place Ba FC were beaten comfortably 3-0 at home by eighth-place Navua FC. Lautoka FC and Nadi FC also picked up three points.