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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South Korean businessman Solomon Choi is bringing two junior football teams to Tasmania late next month to play local sides for the Tasko Cup.

Thirty South Korean youngsters in the under-12 age group will be in the touring party.

Choi, who farms on the North-West Coast and exports breeding cattle to Korea, is keen to develop sporting and business links between Tasmania and South Korea.

His family lives in Sydney, but he spends much of his time on the farm in Tasmania because he has fallen in love with the island.

The organisers of the trip also include the Korean Youth Football Association and the Tasko International Football Training School, formed by Mr Choi and whose director is former Korean international player Jin Hyo Seok.

“My aim is to exchange each country’s sports culture and boost the interest in junior soccer matches through frequent competitions,” said Choi, who was in Hobart last week.

“If the matches between Tasmanian and Korean youth teams are successful, then yearly matches will be held.

“We would like to see a Tasmanian team visit Korea in October for the International Youth Soccer Competition.”

At this stage, the Koreans are due to leave Korea on 18 August and arrive in Launceston the next day and they will be in Tasmania until 24 August.

Hotel accommodation is being arranged in Hobart, while they will stay at a camp at Port Sorell during their time in the north.

Apart from playing up to six games during their stay, the youngsters will be engaged in sightseeing and cultural activities, including school visits.

If Tasmania does send a team to the international tournament in Korea from 2-7 October, it will compete against teams from Japan, Germany, Spain, China and Korea.

Choi initially approached Football Federation Tasmania about the visit, but due to glitches in the lines of communication, nothing eventuated so he made contact with Ken Morton and teams from the Morton Soccer School will now play against the visitors in Hobart.

Morton and Brian Downes have arranged matches for the visitors in the north of the State.

I guess it is an opportunity missed by FFT, but perhaps they could be involved in some capacity at an official level as it is hoped to have welcoming ceremonies in Launceston and Hobart involving government and civic leaders.



Photos: (Hobart Olympic women's squad (top) and University women's squad (bottom) [Click on photo for large view]

Women’s State-wide Cup Semi-final, KGV Park, Wednesday, 29 July 2009
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University 1-3 Hobart Olympic
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Both teams produced an exciting display of football and the score should have been much higher.

Hobart Olympic’s Lauren Barnes was playing her last match before taking up a football scholarship in the United States of America.

University employed some clever tactics and tried to play balls over the Olympic defence into space for their strikers to run on to and this often had Olympic in trouble.

Poor finishing by University negated these tactics, however, but the goal they did score was marvellous.

Olympic almost opened their account in the 3rd minute, but Barnes fired wide.

In the 11th minute, Olympic hit the front when Bliss Cantrell’s neat flick put Vanessa Johnson in on goal and she easily beat the unprotected keeper, Madeleine Jona.

Holly Ayton was everywhere for University. She took free-kicks and corners, attacked and defended, and in the 16th minute she fired over the bar from a long-range free-kick from the left.

Olympic were producing some fine combinations involving Johnson, Cantrell, Nicky Hale and Chrystal Dean down the right, while Sarah Fitzgerald was a force in midfield and Natalie Price and Barnes were effective at the back.

University counter-attacked well, however, and Lucy Quayle should have done better than shoot straight at keeper Nicola Smith five minutes before half-time.

University were often guilty of poor decision making, with players choosing to shoot rather than pass inside to a colleague.

At one point, for example, Sarah Tassel broke through on the right and shot wide when team-mate Kathleen Prescott was unmarked on the edge of the box.

A minute after the resumption, Dean put Cantrell clear on goal, but she shot wide.

In the 52nd minute, Fitzgerald fed Johnson, but she hit the side-netting.

The right-wing combination worked again in the 58th minute as Dean released Cantrell down the flank, but Jona did well to turn the effort wide for a corner.

Olympic increased their lead on the hour when Johnson returned the earlier favour and put Cantrell through the middle. She rounded the keeper and rolled the ball into an empty net to make it 2-0.

In the 70th minute, Sally Prescott attacked down the right and chose to shoot rather than pick out the unmarked Tassell inside, but the shot flew wide.

Three minutes later, the excellent Johnson forced the University keeper to turn her effort wide for a corner.

University pulled a goal back in the 83rd minute, and what a fine goal it was. Bianca Risorto and Quayle played two precise one-twos as they made for goal and Risorto finished clinically.

A minute later, Olympic restored their two-goal buffer when an error at the back by University allowed Dean to gain possession on the right of the box and her shot from an acute angle took a deflection before flying into the net.

Fitzgerald was sent off in the final minute after clashing with Quayle.

Olympic will play Clarence United in the final after Clarence beat Glenorchy Knights 2-1 in the other semi-final earlier in the evening.

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• University coach, Les Richardson, said:

“I thought we were basically undermanned, so we were outplayed because of the undermanning.

“We only had eight of our regular players in there and we filled up with one of the under-16s and four of the Division Ones who have never played Premier League in their life.

“I thought the girls did a really good job against a very, very good opposition and, certainly, Olympic deserved their win.”

• Hobart Olympic coach, John Fiotakis, said:

“The first half was very scrappy and we weren’t settled. There were a couple of girls tired and injured out there.

“In the second half, they put it together and started playing the ball to feet and backing each other up.

“But, all in all, it was a fair outcome.

“Uni had their chances and we had our chances and took them and got them.

“But, a good game in all. A very tough game, but the girls are fairly tired. They’ve had a lot of games in the past month as they’ve had to catch up and that.

“But, no, I was happy with the result.”

• Hobart Olympic coach, Atef Abdaltam, said:

“I think, in the first half, we played flat-footed.

“In the second half, we came back better.

“They were more hungry than us and we didn’t win the ball enough in the first half.

“But, in the second half, we played better, but not the best.

“But, that is football.”

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University: Jona, Ayton, Papadakis, Cables, Roach, Risorto, S Prescott, K Prescott, Reale, Murray, Quayle, Parodi, Cliff, Tassel

Booked: Ayton 67

Goals: Risorto 83

Hobart Olympic: Smith, Jones, Jarvis, Markellos, Dean, N Hale, Cantrell, price, C Hale, Johnson, Shreeve, Fitzgerald, Barnes, Ortmann

Sent off: Fitzgerald 90

Goals: Johnson 11, Cantrell 60, University own goal 84

Att: 50

Ref: N Clements



Women’s State-wide Cup Semi-finals, KGV Park, Wednesday, 29 July 2009

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Glenorchy Knights 1-2 Clarence United

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Clarence United had two early chances when Paris Crowe hit the outside of the near post with a shot and Erin Hall fired straight at Knights keeper Bianca Walker.

Knights’ first chance came in the 17th minute when Georgina Griffiths-Lee volleyed over the bar following a corner by Lauren Griffiths-Lee.

Clarence hit back in the 19th minute, but Hall’s shot was directed straight at the keeper.

Danielle Nossiter almost punished Clarence for poor marking in the 28th minute, but her header lacked power and was slightly off target.

Knights were matching it with their opponents at this stage and, in the 32nd minute, Jemma Dacy poked an effort just wide, while three minutes later, Michelle Luck forced a corner with her shot.

Emily Cripps was unlucky for Clarence in the 38th minute when she fired narrowly wide from the left of the penalty area.

A minute before the interval, Madaline Gillbee’s pass put Kathryn McLeod through on the right and she put Clarence ahead with a fine finish.

In stoppage time at the end of the first half, Lauren Griffiths-Lee scored a brilliant goal, beating several defenders on her way into the penalty area before finishing accurately to make it 1-1.

Six minutes after the resumption, Crowe beat Luck on the left but blazed wide of the target.

McLeod shot wide on the hour as Clarence went in search of a winner, while a minute later, Crowe was again presented with a good chance but shot wide.

Madaline Gillbee was providing some excellent crosses from the right, but Clarence were unable to make the most of this service.

In the 68th minute, a marvellous dribble by Crowe set up McLeod, but she missed the chance to put Clarence ahead.

Seconds later, Emily Cripps also spurned a chance to score at the left-hand post and solid defending by the Knights and good goalkeeping by Walker seemed certain to take the game into extra-time.

But, with a minute remaining, Hall played Crowe through and she capped a fine display by rounding the keeper and scoring the winner.

Clarence will meet Hobart Olympic in the final after Olympic downed University 3-1 in the other semi-final this evening.

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· Glenorchy Knights coach, Rodney Tattam, said:

“I thought it was a really high-quality game of soccer.

“I thought both teams were fantastic and played in a really good spirit.

“We defended well and we had a few good chances.

“I thought it was really even game and we gave it our best shot and good luck to Clarence in the final.”

· Clarence United coach, Ronnie Bolton, said:

“I think, probably overall, it was a pretty even game.

“It took a fantastic goal to separate the two teams.

“I think that was the difference on the night.

“I think, considering the injuries we had, we performed very well.

“Knights did very well to keep right up to us and I can hardly recall a free-kick in the game.

“It was played in the right spirit.”

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Glenorchy Knights: Walker, G Griffiths-Lee, Luck, Turner, L Griffiths-Lee, Self, Dacy, Finn, Sain, Garth, Nossiter, Smith, Nevin, Cook, Coulson (Interchange applied)

Goals: L Griffiths-Lee 46

Clarence United: VanderNiet, Archer, Brighella, Cripps, Edwards, Gillbee, Hall, Herbert, Kannegiesser, McLeod, Pagano, Taylor, Ridler, Crowe, Undy (Interchange applied)

Goals: McLeod 44, Crowe 89

Att: 60

Ref: S Natoli


Photo: Zebras' under-19 coach, Ronnie De Felice, lifting a trophy for Juventus when he captained the senior side in the early 1980s

Under-19 Cup semi-final, KGV Park, Tuesday, 28 July 2009

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Tilford Zebras 2-1 South Hobart
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South Hobart began strongly, but it was Tilford Zebras who had two glorious chances in the opening eight minutes.

Adam Young had a good opening in the first minute when he broke down the right, but with keeper Michael Hughes at the near post, Young pulled his shot wide of the far upright.

Daniel Phillips put South ahead in the 5th minute when he was unmarked inside the box on the left and placed a low shot past Declan Reid.

Three minutes later, Zebras were again presented with an opening, but Jarred Gilroy shot wide of the far post.

Zebras equalised in the 25th minute in the most simple of manners as Liam Fitzgerald’s corner from the left eluded everyone in a crowded goalmouth except Oliver Bird, who nodded the ball home from close range.

Andy Brennan had a nightmare of a second half for South Hobart. He might have won a couple of penalties, while on another occasion, he was through on goal but delayed his shot and was dispossessed by a last-ditch tackle from Alex Luttrell.

In the 65th minute, an error by Zebras in defence presented Brennan with another gilt-edged chance, but the youngster shot wide of the far post.

Zebras had good chances, too, but Luke Engels, Matt Hall and Robert Lapolla all shot over the crossbar.

Lapolla found the target for the winner in the 68th minute from an acute angle on the right as the South Hobart defence pushed out.

Zebras might have had a third goal in the final minute when Engels was put through on the left and crossed low for Adam Young to run on to the ball, but his shot lacked power and Michael Hughes produced a fine save.

Zebras will meet Clarence United in the Under-19 Cup Final after Clarence’s 3-1 win over Metro earlier in the evening.

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• Tilford Zebras coach, Ronnie De Felice, said:

“It was a tough game.

“The boys really battled it out because we copped a bit of a hiding the week before from South Hobart.

“But, bearing in mind it was more of a reserve under-19 team, and it’s going to stand them in good stead because a few of the boys will go back up to reserves to play South Hobart and help Romeo Frediani out again.

“The way that I wanted to play the team this year was to feed the reserves and the seniors and promote and encourage and support these kids to really move up a little bit and step up and have the initiative to play in the reserves and seniors.

“Last year, I kept the team together completely for the year and we won the league, but this year it’s a nurturing stage again and they deserved the win tonight and, hopefully, we’ll have a really good showdown with Clarence at the end of August, or whenever the Cup Final is.”

• South Hobart coach, Steve Adkins, said:

“”It was a good, tight game.

“We had a few chances, they had a few chances.

“I thought the guys toughed it out really well and I think the result could have gone either way.

“I thought we could have had one, two or three penalties.

“I thought there were a few decisions that probably may not have gone our way in the box, but, you know, that happens at times.

“There’s not much you can do about it now.”

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Tilford Zebras: Declan Reid; Declan Smith, Alex Luttrell, Sam Hall, Jarred Gilroy, Liam Fitzgerald, Oliver Bird, Matt Hall, Ash Fisher, Adam Young, Luke Engels (Interchange: Nicholas Leitch, Robert Lapolla, Toby Macgregor)

Booked: Adam Young 39

Goals: Oliver Bird 25, Robert Lapolla 68

South Hobart: Michael Hughes; Nick Simpson, Kieran Roach, Dylan Postma, Nicholas Cuthbertson, William Ross, Edward Croger, Daniel Phillips, Andy Brennan, Campbell Stewart, Ned Clarke (Interchange: Tristan North, David Woolley, Thomas Bilson, Hugo Bladel)

Goals: Daniel Phillips 5

Att: 90

Ref: D Lineen