Who Is Walter Pless?

Walter_Pless

A teacher by profession, but is now in his 38th 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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Chris_Kumpulainen_and_van

Photo:  Olympia Warriors centre-back Chris Kumpulainen with his work van.  Will Olympia park the bus against South Hobart?  [PlessPix]

Tilford Zebras have a great chance to move into second spot on the Victory League standings this weekend.

Zebras are currently third on goal-difference from second-placed Devonport City but may well displace the North-West Coast side on Saturday.

Tommy_Fotak_and_Paul_Palmer_of_Zebras

Photo:  Zebras coach Tommy Fotak (left) said Paul Palmer (right) is unavailable for the Kingborough game [PlessPix]

Zebras must be favoured to win against sixth-placed Kingborough Lions United at 2pm on Saturday at Lightwood Park, while Devonport City are far from assured of a win away to fifth-ranked Northern Rangers at 5pm the same day at the NTCA 2 Ground in Launceston.

Coach Tommy Fotak will make some changes to the Zebras line-up.

“There will be some enforced changes due to unavailability,” Fotak said.

“Andrew Telega is in Las Vegas attending a wedding and, more than likely, has tickets to a Siegfried and Roy show, and Paul Palmer is unavailable for selection from the squad from the previous week.

“Ryan Smith will come into the starting line-up likely with Ethan Engels, and Ryan Norval returns in goal.

“Lightwood Park is a tough place to visit and, if Zebras are to get a positive result, a disciplined performance is required.

“The top-four may be settled, but positions second through fourth are very tight and we need to keep winning games to put pressure on the teams around us.”

Kingborough Lions United coach, Steve Adkins, forever the optimist, is looking forward to his side’s final home game of the season.

“Zebras are only one of two clubs that we haven't taken points off during the roster so far, although we were within seconds of a result in our first encounter against them at home,” Adkins said.

“They certainly have the firepower to create plenty of goal-scoring opportunities and we will need to nullify the supply to their forwards to limit these opportunities.

“Will Davis has overcome injury and will come into an otherwise unchanged squad.

“Young guns Lewis Verdouw and Dae Young Kang both performed well last week and will hold their spots in the starting eleven.

“Our aim for the remaining three games of the season is to be competitive, while also giving some of our younger players additional game time to further their experience at this level.

“Fifth spot is still up for grabs and we will be looking to edge closer to Rangers with a result from the match.

“We’re looking forward to an entertaining encounter.”

Peter_Savill_of_Northern_Rangers

Photo:  Northern Rangers coach Peter Savill urges his side on to score more goals [PlessPix]

Northern Rangers’ spokesman, Brendan Lichtendonk, described the coming encounter with Devonport City as a ‘massive’ game.

“We have great respect for them, they are a quality side,” said Lichtendonk.

“One thing that we feel they have done superbly is bring players who are struggling with form back in to be match winners, the likes of Ben Foote being the most recent example.

“He was dropped last time we played them and since then he has probably been one of Devonport's most valuable players.

“That's a credit to their coaching staff.

“We will lose Josh Burk this weekend as he has work commitments due to the fact that Sporting Pulse had our game down as a Sunday 5pm kick off, so that is frustrating as he has been playing really well.

“Ash Fisher will be given another deserved opportunity as a result and he is a good, strong player who will fill the role well.

“Obviously, weather is set to wreak havoc on this weekend’s matches and we are not sure how it will all pan out, but we will leave it to the referees to decide.

“We have arranged a pitch inspection for Friday, but it looks as though there is another [weather] system coming through on Saturday.

“We felt we played well against Kingborough, but we will need to be lethal in front of goal this week to beat Devonport, who can score goals across the park.

“Kieren Mulraney keeps popping up from centre-back, and then I think every player in their midfield and forward line has good contributions on the score sheet.

“We will need to be at our defensive best, not forgetting to score goals at the same time, and it should be a great contest.”

McKenna_Chris_of_Devonport_23_March_2013

Photo:  Devonport City coach Chris McKenna [PlessPix]

Devonport City coach Chris McKenna considers Rangers to be tough opponents.

“We’ll be looking to return to the winners list this weekend against a tough opponent in Northern Rangers,” McKenna said.

“Our starting eleven this weekend won’t be known until game day as we have Brayden Mann and Bobby Eaves under injury clouds.

“Joel Stone trained on Tuesday and was moving relatively well and, provided he pulls up well from Thursday night’s session, he’ll play.

“Michael Holden is likely to come back into the team and Peter Gilham is likely to play NPL in his last game before going away for three weeks.

“We weren’t entirely satisfied in our performance against South last weekend.

“We had spells in the game where we felt we had control but didn’t manage to take our chances.

“South were the better team on the day and deservedly won, however, it’s another game that could’ve been so different.

“Training has again been indoors this week with all grounds at Valley Road closed by the council.

“Hopefully, conditions at the NTCA are reasonable and we see a good quality game.

Shane_Brassington_left_of_Northern_Rangers

Photo:  Northern Rangers' Shane Brassington (left) will pose a danger to Devonport City [PlessPix]

“Northern Rangers are a quality team with dangerous players across the park.

“Brassington is a class act and our back-four will need to be wary of him.

“He’s partnered by a group of dangerous players around him who are also capable of influencing the result.

“We managed to control our last game against them at Valley Road and we know that, if we can improve on last weekend’s effort, we’ll be good enough to take the points.”

Champions South Hobart will be presented with the Victory League trophy at South Hobart Oval on Sunday before their 2pm game against fourth-placed Olympia Warriors.

“This is our final Victory League home game of the 2013 season and there should be a great atmosphere at Darcy Street on Sunday,” said South Hobart coach, Ken Morton.

“Olympia are always formidable opponents, [and] we expect nothing less in this game.

“Holmes and Kumpulainen are forming a very strong partnership in the centre of the defence.

Lachlan_Nichols

Photo:  Olympia's Lachlan Nichols is one player South Hobart will have to watch [PlessPix]

“[Lachlan] Nichols is the orchestrator in midfield and, with deadly striker Emmanuel Tsakiris back in the line-up, we can expect nothing but a tough game.

“South will need to be strong, focused and disciplined and play a controlled game.

“I have a strong group to pick from.  Liam Scott will return, Hugh Ludford also got through an hour in the SPL last weekend, [so] at this stage our only doubt is Cam Williams.

“Following a great result and performance at Devonport, we would like to back this up with another strong performance to finish off our home fixtures.”

Olympia Warriors coach, Glen McNeill, sees the game as a real challenge.

“We are looking to give a better account of ourselves on Sunday as we were soundly beaten by them last time,” said McNeill.

“This week we will have missing Jono Griffiths and Nick Mearns as they are on school camp.

“We welcome back our Korean player, Jeong Bin Kim, from injury, as well as [Lachlan] Nichols from suspension.”

Luke_Wilcock_14_January_2012

Photo:  Luke Wilcock will come back into Olympia's starting eleven [PlessPix]

The remaining match of Round 20 is at 2pm on Saturday at KGV Park, when seventh-ranked Glenorchy Knights entertain last-placed Launceston City.

Knights coach Chris Hey is the first to admit this is a ‘nothing’ game.

“This week, we match up against Launceston City in our seventh versus eighth clash, which no one else will have much interest in other than those clubs participating,” said Hey.

“Both clubs would be looking at finishing on a good note in preparation for 2014, so I am expecting an intense encounter, as we had last time we met.

“We have replaced Declan Foley from the squad with a young 16-year-old, Tyler Harrison, who has emigrated to Australia with his family from Wales.

“Tyler has demonstrated good control, passing skills, along with good vision, so it is a good opportunity for us to provided Tyler with a taste at the top level here in Tasmania for the remaining games.

“Sam Johnson is back from overseas and Sam provides excellent leadership within the club structure, so we welcome Sam back into the Victory league and he will also work off the bench.

“We have significant changes to our line up, particularly through our back-four, with three regulars missing in Jal David, who is injured, Jade Clay, who has tonsillitis, and Andrew Robb, who is holidaying in New Zealand with Callen Griffen.

“At this time, all four players are omitted, although I will check in later in the week with Jade Clay and see if he is fit enough to work off the bench.

“MK [Mynonge Kamba], George Kamano and Harry Booth are also questionable based on sickness, none of them training last evening, but I am hopeful they will be available.

“Michael McKenna has found it difficult to train over the past four or five weeks and is getting married on our last game of the season, so at this point, it provids Sam Cornish with two games to see where he is at this level.  Michael will be available off the bench this week.”

Luke_Pender_Launceston_City_defender

Photo:  Launceston City's Luke Pender will hope to counteract the Knights attack [PlessPix]

Launceston City coach, Mark Egan, was encourage by his side’s first-half performance against Tilford Zebras last weekend.

"I felt the lads play extremely well for the first forty minutes last week,” Egan said.

“I suspect they looked up at the scoreboard and saw that there was five minutes left in the half and relaxed and, in that five minutes, Zebras scored twice.  Another lesson learned.

"One minute after the restart we had the opportunity to pull one back, with the Zebras keeper stranded and the goal beckoning [but] the ball sailed over the crossbar.

“While the scoreboard might tell a different story, the real story was that we pressed Zebras, put them under pressure, [but] unfortunately for us, the quality of Tommy's lads shone through and they scored a couple of blinding goals.

"This will be our third game on the bounce at KGV, our home away from home, [and] there's no doubt that my lads have grown more accustomed to the plastic surface.

“The last time we faced Knights, it was a very, very close encounter and we will be looking to take it one step further this time around and secure three points.”

 

TASMANIAN VICTORY LEAGUE (As at Saturday, 10 August 2013)

 

TEAM

P

W

D

L

F

A

Pts

South Hobart

19

16

2

1

74

24

50

Devonport City

19

11

2

6

60

35

35

Tilford Zebras

19

10

5

4

62

38

35

Olympia Warriors

19

10

4

5

48

30

34

Northern Rangers

19

6

6

7

50

33

24

Kingborough Lions Utd

18

5

4

9

33

47

19

Glenorchy Knights

19

3

4

12

27

51

13

Launceston City

18

0

1

17

11

107

1

 

My selections (winners in capitals) are:

Kingborough Lions United v TILFORD ZEBRAS (Lightwood Park, 2pm, Saturday, 17 August 2013)

GLENORCHY KNIGHTS v Launceston City (KGV Park, 2pm, Saturday, 17 August 2013)

NORTHERN RANGERS v Devonport City (NTCA 2 Ground, 5pm, Saturday, 17 August 2013)

SOUTH HOBART v Olympia Warriors (South Hobart Oval, 2pm, Sunday, 18 August 2013)

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Comments   

+3 #15 Anonymous 2013-08-16 21:28
I bet Mike would be playing if it were South Knights were up against today.
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+4 #14 Greek god. 2013-08-16 09:23
Quoting Mamacas:
Congratulations to Ken, Vicki the South Hobart Board and their squad of players on being the Champions of 2013.


Lol
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+2 #13 Mamacas 2013-08-16 07:56
Congratulations to Ken, Vicki the South Hobart Board and their squad of players on being the Champions of 2013.
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+4 #12 The bearded captain 2013-08-16 07:00
I feel as though I have let the boys down this year. My wife and family have both told me that they are not proud of me. To ranger fans everywhere I hope this weekend that will change, big up the ranger army.
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+3 #11 Anonymous 2013-08-16 06:50
Quoting Anonymous:
#6 should they be playing it 6 times in a row?

Nah just the once to piss off moneybags will do , maybe put the speakers right outside the owimpia change rooms lol
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0 #10 Anonymous 2013-08-16 06:11
#6 should they be playing it 6 times in a row?
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+2 #9 Anonymous 2013-08-16 05:47
Is spinner still coaching?
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0 #8 Anonymous 2013-08-16 04:51
Zebras to peak against Lions

City to beat a weak Knights

Devonport win easily against Rangers

South in a close one against Olympia
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0 #7 Two Bobs Worth 2013-08-16 04:49
The only interesting part of this will be if Mamacas has the class to hang around for the presentation ceremony, and if South have the class to *not* play that song again.

South may have a bit of class but not that much. Fair chance the song will get played be it win, loose or draw.
Knights V LC worth a watch, City's best chance for 3 points away & need to make it count. Should be a good contest.
However game of the round, VL & SPL might be South V The Beach on Sunday before VL game. Will be interesting to see who lines up for both sides.
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+14 #6 Anonymous 2013-08-16 03:57
Isnt it ironic that South are getting presented with the title against the team that bitched about a certain song being played at the start of the season . Turns out South knew all along the " we are the champions "
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