(Photo Credit: OFC Media via Phototek)
The awards have been handed out at the inaugural OFC Women’s Champions League in Port Moresby. A huge congratulations to New Caledonia’s AS Academy Féminine for taking out the title winning all four of their matches.
As well as their winners medals and Hekari United’s runners up medals, the following awards were presented.
The Golden Ball: Player of the Tournament
Edsy Matao (AS Academy Féminine): The rock at the heart of the AS Academy defence, her presence in the back four was a key reason goalkeeper Lorenza Hnamano rarely saw any goalmouth action. The skipper commanded a real presence and while attackers Christelle Wahnawe, Jackie Pahoa and Alice Wenessia received most of the plaudits, without Matao at the back, the overall result could have been different.
The Golden Boot: Top goalscorer
Marie Kaipu (Hekari United): Talismanic, inspirational, brilliant in front of goal, the Hekari United striker scored 9 goals in four games including four against Kiwi FC. Supremely quick and with plenty of vision, Kaipu was such a menace that Labasa Women FC coach Arthur Simmons moved his best attacking player Sophie Diyalowai into central defence to mark her during the final match.
The Golden Glove: Best Goalkeeper
Sylvester Maenu’u (Koloale FC): The Koloale FC stopper was a consistent source of frustration for opposition attackers, producing a number of outstanding saves to keep her side competitive throughout the campaign. Her leadership and excellent distribution from the back was also a key source of attacks for the Solomon Islands side.
Fair Play Team of the Tournament:
Hekari United: Second on the table behind AS Academy Féminine, Hekari United had the best disciplinary record at the tournament, not picking up a single yellow card. It was an impressive feat considering the pressure they were under playing at home and after having suffered the opening day heartbreak of conceding a 100th minute goal to lose 2-1 to the New Caledonian side, which ultimately decided the tournament outcome.