Who Is Walter Pless?

Walter_Pless

A teacher by profession, but is now in his 37th year as a football writer. Has written for "Soccer Action" (Melbourne), "Australian Soccer Weekly" (Sydney) and "World Soccer" (London), as well as for several Tasmanian newspapers. Currently contributing to "Goal!Weekly" in Melbourne and the Australian magazine "Soccer International". Played for Croatia-Glenorchy, Caledonians, Metro, Rapid and University in Tasmania, as well as in the United States of America. Coached University, Metro and Croatia-Glenorchy.

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Clarence United Squad (bottom)

University Squad (top)


CLARENCE UNITED 3-0 UNIVERSITY
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Clarence United qualified for their first-ever Summer Cup final when they beat University 3-0 in their Group A match in the Premier League section of the competition at KGV Park on Friday night.

Clarence dominated the match. They won 11 corners to University’s one, and had 19 shots at goal.

Michael Moschogianis, the Clarence goalkeeper, touched the ball just five times, and two of those were at goalkicks.

The Eastern Shore outfit should have been in front after just 5 minutes when Chris Hunt crossed from the byline on the left, but Luke Cripps steered an easy header wide of the target.

In the 13th minute, Cripps fired at goal on the turn from the left-hand corner of the box, but the ball flew high over the bar.

On the stroke of half-time, a great cross from the left by Julian McMahon found Matthew Chapman, but he headed over the University goal.

Cripps and Ben Hamlet were causing University all sorts of problems with their mobility and speed, but the Clarence finishing left much to be desired.

University were on the back foot most of the time and they invariably gave the ball away as soon as they cleared their lines and tried to attack.

University’s newcomer Edward Opira, a striker, showed some fine touches, but he had little support and the Clarence goal was never under threat.

Clarence finally turned their superiority into goals in the second half, but they were sloppy affairs, two of them coming from corners.

A minute after the resumption, Cripps chested Hamlett’s corner into the net as everyone stood and watched. Indeed, Cripps appeared more surprised than anyone as the ball entered the net at the near post.

Hamlett headed against a post four minutes later, while in the 41st minute of this one-hour contest, McMahon headed home Chapman’s high left-wing cross to make it 2-0.

Ben Parker added the third 10 minutes from the end following Ben Phillips’s corner.
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  • Clarence United coach, Andrew Brown, said:

“I expected the boys to continue improving as we’ve been working on a few things for a number of weeks now.

“We’re by no means the finished article and we have no ideas of grandeur.

“But, today, in perfect conditions, I was happy with our shape. I was happy with the commitment of the players, but still our composure was lacking.

“Against the better teams we may get murdered. We’ll see.

“But, today was a good day for us and it’s the first time in our history we’ve made the Summer Cup final and we’re thrilled.”

  • University coach, Scott Gallacher, said:

“We tried, but we’re just not good enough. It’s as simple as that.

“They’re a good side, Clarence.

“They changed their playing style and they’re playing a bit more like our play - zonal, 4-4-2.

“Yeah, they did it well. We tried, but we’re just not good enough.”
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Clarence United: Moschogianis - Toghill, Lewis, Ling, J Huigsloot - McMahon, Cannamela, Parker, Hunt - Cripps, Hamlett [Substitutes: Chapman, L Huigsloot, Hamilton, Phillips]

Goals: Cripps 31, McMahon 41, Parker 50

University: Piesse - Merry, Procter, J Andrews, Wilkinson -- Besley, Griffiths, Venettacci, Temby - M Andrews, Opira [Substitutes: J Wilson, Teale, Gooch]

Booked: Wilkinson

Att: 200

Ref: S Collins
The ‘ladder qualifying’ round of matches is on this Sunday in the northern Steve Hudson Cup series.

This involves a merging of the two groups and the final standings of the eight participating clubs will be determined, the top four teams qualifying for the semi-finals.

South Hobart and Northern Rangers are in the box seat as they are level on 7 points, but South Hobart has the superior goal-difference.

South Hobart are playing in the southern Summer Cup on Friday and have a day of rest before taking on the Rangers at 3pm on Sunday.

The southerners are the holders of this trophy and should be good enough to beat a Rangers outfit that has yet to field its strongest line-up and which ahs yet to hit top form.

South Hobart slipped up the weekend before last when they were held to a goalless draw, but with coach Ken Morton calling the shots again with his presence this time, it’s difficult to envisage another hiccup.

Rangers’ reserves are playing a practice match on Saturday against Launceston City so that coach Roslan Saad can make up his mind about two vacancies in his line-up.

One of those who will be in action is Thataetsile Kakadumane, known in the south as ‘the Botswanan speedster’, and if he passes the test, he may make his first appearance in the tournament.

His place is not assured, however, as his rivals are Gabriel Tams, Rhys Prestidge and Mark Jefferson.

“We are approaching the match as just another pre-season preparation match.,” said Saad.

“The players were told that all positions are still open and only the best players that are able to play with the team system will be selected for the senior team this season.

“Individual skills come second to understanding the team system and playing as a team.

“South Hobart has always been one of the top clubs in Tasmania and I don’t think Northern Rangers as a club is anywhere near that.

“But, for a young club, we are definitely progressing and are heading to the right directions.

“It will be beneficial for us if we can play against good teams like South Hobart twice, as I believe the best way to learn is to ‘do it’ and to 'do it better' ”.

Taroona, in third place, meet Launceston City, who are a point behind the southerners, at 1pm.

“On Sunday, we play Launceston City in the Steve Hudson Cup, which is a game we desperately want to do well in as they absolutely smashed us last time we played them two seasons ago in the Statewide Cup,” said Taroona coach, Ben Horgan.

“This will be a pretty different team to the one that played that day, but a few of the guys were around for it and will want to make amends.

“We didn’t play too badly against Northern Rangers last weekend when we lost 2-0, but we lacked a cutting edge and Chris Cox didn’t get much support up front.

“He has been in outstanding form so we need to make sure we get players forward quickly in support and, overall, we need to be a bit more aggressive in attack.

“We’ve also been guilty of conceding silly goals through concentration lapses throughout the tournament, so we’ll focus on eliminating those from our game..

“Alex Edwards will replace Hugo Luttmer, who strained his hamstring in the first half last week, and Jack Elliott is also unavailable so Cian Carey will move into midfield, and I will take his place in central defence.”

The Tasmanian Institute of Sport take on Prospect Knights at 11am.

At the AGM of FFT on Thursday, most clubs opposed the TIS representing University at under-19 level in the southern competitions and it will be interesting to see if this puts any psychological pressure on the youngsters or their coach.

It must be unsettling to know you are not wanted in a competition.

But, the TIS is good enough to win this game against a side that has yet to taste victory in the tournament.

Launceston United and Riverside Olympic meet at 2.30pm and nothing is riding on the outcome of this clash.

Launceston, the hosts of the tournament, will be keen to get something out of it.
Beachside and New Town Eagles, the two top sides in Group A of the Division One Summer Cup competition, clash at Olinda Grove on Saturday at 5.30pm in a game which could decide one finalist.

Both sides have three points after one round of matches and the side that wins will have one foot in the final.

John Holliday, Bob Hadfield, and Steve Louden are unavailable for Eagles, but Adam Jones and Kim Wiggins return.

“It’s good to have a few experienced guys back this week as this squad has about as much depth as a Mills And Boon novel,” said Eagles coach, Marty Nidorfer.

“Beachside will be tough, as we have experienced in the past, so training this week has concentrated on one-touch play and rapid movement.

“We will miss Bob Hadfield, who continually performs. He’s a young man with an old head.”

Beachside is brimming with talent, however, and should be a little too good for Eagles.

Nelson and Taroona, the top teams in Group B, clash at 1pm and, again, the winner is almost assured of a place in the final.

Paul Gazzignato and Rowan Sakul are doubtful for Nelson, while Tristian Cripps is out because of an ankle injury.

Joe Van Derv Slink and Robert Brook will make their debuts, while Tom Gordon retains his place in the side.

“We haven't played Taroona for a while because they disappeared off to Premier League to avoid playing us,” said Nelson coach, Michael Roach.

“In any case, while this is Summer Cup and neither club will have its strongest squad, it will be interesting for us to see where we are in comparison to them at this stage of the season.”

Taroona are active in both the southern and northern pre-season competitions but are doing very well in both.

“We have another busy weekend, with a Summer Cup game against Nelson on Saturday and Launceston City on Sunday in the Steve Hudson Cup,” said Tarooan coach, Ben Horgan.

“I was really happy with the commitment shown against Metro last weekend and it was great to get a win.

“Our actual performance showed up some of the things we still need to work on, but we knew that would be the case.

“We weren’t able to keep a lot of possession and, as a result, we didn’t create too many chances, but on the positive side, we were very resilient defensively once we settled and the longer the game went the less I thought we looked like conceding.

“The form of Duncan Carey and Dan Palmer was also encouraging as they have both missed a fair bit of pre-season, and they will be better for the run.

“Sam Johnson was outstanding in defence and it was great to see him score the winner after he saved us by clearing a ball off our goal line in the first half.

“The team will be strengthened in midfield with last season’s best-and-fairest winner Jack Elliott included, but we will save Sam for the Steve Hudson Cup game on Sunday and, hopefully, Lucas Wyatt will be fit to take his place.

“We will also look at giving 16-year-old winger Liam McGuinness a debut as he has been really impressive over the pre-season and he will add some real pace out wide."

In other games, Hobart United, who have lost more players to Hobart Olympic during the week, face DOSA in a Group A match at 4pm, while Christian United take on Metro at 2.30pm in a Group B fixture.

“This week, after a poor performance from the team, we have seen some more senior players go, mainly to Olympic,” said Hobart United’s Pedro Ramirez.

“The challenge will be to get the full team together.

“Mark Broadbent has been working on shaping the team for a game that will tell how Hobart United will perform throughout the year.”

One cannot help but feel for United, who won the title last season and then lost the promotion/relegation play-off to New Town Eagles.

It really is a story of from riches to rags.

DOSA have much to prove as they step up a tier this season. They have always been great rivals of United and the shoe now appears to be on the other foot.

Metro should have few concerns about the game against Christian United.

“We will make a few changes to the team that played against Taroona in round 1,” said Metro coach, Darrin Chaffey.

“Last week was a good hit-out. We were reasonably pleased with most parts of our game.

“I think both teams were light on personnel, which will certainly change over the coming weeks.

“We had a good 75 per cent of the play, but lacked the finishing up front.

“The end result could’ve been very different had we capitalised on our many chances in the first half.

“However, we didn’t and Taroona had one real chance, which they made the most of.

“This week, on the training track, we’ve been working on ensuring we punish the opposition when giving us a look in.

“James Hope and Shane Leake are unavailable and goalkeeper Michael McKenna is likely to need another week.

“Wade Hawkins and Danny Cowen both had very good debuts and are likely to retain their spots at right back and left-midfield, respectively.

“Jim Brown is a likely starter after missing last week’s game due to work commitments.

“We also have a few new signings that may be available for some game time.”
Clarence United and South Hobart should be the finalists in the Premier League section of the Summer Cup competition.

Clarence need only a draw against University at 6.30pm in their Group A match on Friday at KGV Park, while South Hobart can ensure their second successive appearance in the final with a win against Hobart Olympic at 8pm in a Group B game.

“I am expecting the players to earn the result required to enable the club to reach its first Summer Cup final in Premier League,” said Clarence coach, Andrew Brown.

“I am expecting continued improvement from the players in our last summer cup game.

“I am expecting to see defensive concentration for 60 minutes, more cohesion from the midfield in transition and patience from the forwards.”

Substitute goalkeeper Sam Sweetten is out injured with a dislocated elbow and Steffan Hamilton will come into the Clarence squad.

University have had a poor tournament and nothing is expected to change in this match as far as they are concerned.

Aaron Hindmarsh and Bryn Griffiths may be available for the first time this year, but veteran Martin Piesse will continue in goal in the absence of Rory McCallum, who broke his nose before the tournament began and has been unable to play.

Julian Proud is still suspended and will not be available until the first league match.

University coach Scott Gallacher is adopting a nonchalant approach to this tournament given that he does not have his first-choice side available and anything but a Clarence victory is difficult to foresee.

South Hobart should beat a Hobart Olympic side that has not fulfilled its promise in this pre-season tournament and which went down to New Town Eagles last weekend - the side that South had thrashed 6-0.

South Hobart coach Ken Morton said that the Igor saga was finally over.

The Brazilian has signed with Queensland club Logan City Kings and will not play in Tasmania this season.

Morton may continue to rest striker David Abbott, who has a hamstring strain.

This means Ricky Eaves or Julius Ross will play in the lone striker role.

“We’ve only got one striker and not two,” said Morton, when explaining his side’s 4-5-1 formation.

Olympic will have Peter Otto available after he was cleared by Hobart United, while Carl Larzabal is available after recovering from an ankle injury.

Their new Greek midfielder has still not obtained his international clearance and supporters must be hoping that the wait will be worth it.

“This will be a huge challenge for us, even though we are playing only for our pride,” said Olympic coach, Farrell Shaw.

“It would be nice to give a good performance.”

If Olympic do win, it would pave the way for either Tilford Zebras or New Town Eagles to reach the final.

They clash at South Hobart at 2.30pm on Saturday.

If South Hobart have lost to Olympic, then a win for either Zebras or Eagles would put them in the final.

Zebras sneaked through the back door last year when the situation seemed hopeless and won the trophy, but this game should be of academic interest only as even a draw for South Hobart against Olympic would probably be enough for South to reach the final.

Zebras will miss Daniel Lapolla, who will be attending a wedding.

Coach Nick Lapolla is contemplating some positional changes and Ben Crosswell may play up front.

Henry Fagg missed a training session after clashing heads with Bart Beecroft in last week’s match against South Hobart and sustaining a bruised eye.

Eagles will be without seven players and coach George Krambousanos will promote players who have occupied the bench, such as Matthew Rybak, Barry Pope and Jamie Vernon.

Richard Delara and Chris Wass are suspended after being sent off against Olympic last weekend, while Cormac Collins, Ben Whitehall, Nathan Pitchford, Alex Leszczynski and Alex Gordon are injured.

Kingborough Lions United take on Glenorchy Knights in a Group A match at South Hobart at 1pm on Saturday.

The Knights could reach the final if Clarence somehow lose to University and if the Knights subsequently topple the Lions.

The Knights will be without Tom Sherman, who is in Melbourne, and Corey Smith, who is in Brisbane for Futsal commitments.

Smith would be unlikely to play anyway after differences of opinion between him and coach Eamonn Kelly.

Kelly is adamant that Smith has played his last senior game for the Knights.

“His antics won’t be tolerated,” said Kelly. “He won’t play senior football for the club.

“He is brilliant with the way he handles under-age players at the club and last week his frustration at having been out of the game for 12 months may have come to the fore.

“He can be a good player.

“But, I have ten other people on the park to think about.”

Defender Jade Clay is doubtful because of injury, but Cosmos Paite, who is from Launceston, will retain his place in the side after impressing on his debut last week after coming through the reserves.

Kingborough Lions will have Jason Voss back in goal in place of David Leamey, who was given his chance last week.

Both are only 18 years old and need more experience.

Charles White got through a training session during the week but may make his way back through the reserves.