Round Seven of the 2015 national F-League competition was played out over the weekend of 19/20/21 June with home matches for both the Boomerangs men and women against the strong Inner West Magic club from Sydney.
The two matches provided a great deal of entertainment and high quality futsal — however the men were on the receiving end of a switched on and well-drilled Magic men. The women though, somewhat atoned for their poor performance two weeks ago in the away match up against the Magic when they forced a draw (their third for the season) from the match, coming from behind late in the game.
Inner West Magic
The Women’s team kicked off at 1.00pm with a rematch of the rare sizeable defeat at the hands of Magic two weeks ago at Valentine Park. The girls were very keen to atone for their poor performance a fortnight ago and were pumped from the off.
Michaela Day (returning from several weeks lay off with injury), led the way setting up a spectacular start to the match scoring from a narrow angle not 22 seconds after the referee blew the whistle to start the match.
However, the Boomers fast start advantage did not last, as the skilled Magic combination switched firmly into gear as they crafted their reply not four minutes later – and keeping the pressure on the score bench, netted a second soon after in the sixth minute of the match. The remainder of the half saw foray after foray by both teams, but both defences held firm and the match went into the half-time break with the Magic leading the Boomerangs by a single goal, 2-1.
The Boomers again jumped the Magic at the start of the second half showing determination and will to get back into the game. A cracker of a goal from Becky Roche levelled the game up only three minutes into the half, with a shot that Magic custodian Gill Raymond had no hope of stopping.
The two evenly match teams traded blows for the majority of the remainder of the second half, with both sets of defences performing admirably, stopping repeated attacks from the opposition; with the Boomers roster particularly watchful of the most dangerous ex-Boomerangs, the Palombi sisters, and Maddy Whittall. Magic though, broke the deadlock in the 35th minute with a goal to take – what appeared to be – a match wining lead.
For the next few minutes though, the Boomerangs determined women threw everything they had at the Magic, including a couple of unsuccessful ten metre penalty shots awarded as Magic racked up – in desperation – their sixth and seventh fouls for the half. With two minute to go, Michaela Day found herself in front of a crowded goalmouth, and managed to slot a shot through the congested area and into the back of the net.
The remaining two minutes were just as frantic as both sides moved the ball with lightning speed in order to get into a good offensive position to take a shot on goal. Both teams tried, but neither could add the winning goal. And so it ended a 3-3 epic draw in front of an excited home crowd.
An excellent effort across the court from all Boomers players who hit the court, including F-League debutante – the 15 year old Hayley McLachlan. Special mention also to the girls returning from injury led by the goal-scoring Michaela Day, but also including Olivia Gurney and Mikayla van Deyk. All the players appeared to get through the game uninjured, which will be most beneficial for Round 8 next weekend.
This takes the women’s team to one win and three draws from their six matches played so far this season. Continuing to draw matches, may not be enough to get them into the final four – they need to win four or five of their final six matches to ensure a top four finish and a chance to once again play finals futsal.
Boomerangs (Day 2, Roche) 3-3 Inner West Magic
Check out photos of the match HERE
Inner West Magic
The early game on Saturday morning was the men’s match against Inner West Magic.
Two weeks ago in Sydney, the corresponding Magic home game saw a very evenly contested match resulting in a 2-0 victory to the Magic, scoring their first goal in the first minute of play, and their second, not until the final couple of minutes.
The lads went into the team confident that they could match it once again with one of the stronger teams in the league in 2015 – even though they were without the injured Michael Reeve.
However, the pre match confidence did not lead to positive court action, and the men’s team were simply outplayed all over the court. The Magic played patient possession-focussed futsal and relied on cracks opening in the Boomers defence to push through for a high percentage shot on goal.
Four goals in each half to the Magic probably reflected the strength and class play of the Futsalroo-laden Magic team. Nothing the Boomers tried came off, nor did any change in combination on the court make much of a difference. One upside was the fact that the Boomers men held firm and did not concede until the eleventh minute of the first half – but conceding three in the next three minutes set the pattern for the remainder of the match.
It’s back to the drawing board for the Boomers men in order to work out how best to play against these stronger teams in the 2015 F-League. With matches against the Warriors and Heat up next week at home, and two matches yet to be played against premiership hopefuls Vic Vipers, a thorough examination needs to be taken at both ends of the court to improve both defensive effort and increasing goal scoring opportunities.
Boomerangs 0-8 Inner West Magic
Check photos of the match HERE
Across the F-League
In other matches across a huge weekend of F-League futsal…
Dural took the honors over the Heat in Friday night’s Sydney derby, South Brisbane had a horror trip to Sydney losing all three of their triple header weekend, and Magic defeated Capital FC on their second game in the Capital. Vipers also knocked off the Gold Coast’s Galaxy at home in Melbourne to continue their excellent season where they have had but one loss. The next best positioned are the Magic and Warriors on two losses and two draws a piece and Heat with three losses rounding out the top four.
The Friday night match in Sydney saw the Heat overcome the Warriors, and Magic put eight past Capital FC in their second match of their ACT trip. Most surprisingly though was three straight losses by the strong the South Brisbane team on their road trip to Sydney — they certainly would have been counting on taking some competition points back to Queensland Sunday afternoon. Despite their losses, they still remain in the top four as are Magic who top the table, and the Heat – who are yet to lose a game this season. Rounding out the top four are the Warriors. The Boomers ladies are still in with a good chance to make the finals as they have played fewer games than all other teams so far this season.