- Written by Walter Pless
- Published: 27 October 2013
Photo: Tasmania's Ellie Gavalas looks for a way past Victoria's Natalie Martineau [PlessPix]
(Bass Strait Cup, KGV Park, Glenorchy, Sunday, 27 October 2013)
Tasmania All Stars 1 (R Cavarretta 13)
Victoria All Stars 0
HT: 1-0 Att: 470 Ref: J Hortle
Tasmania: Van Der Niet - Gee, Manuela (O’Brien 64), Storay, Marmion (Walsh 69) - Gavalas (Norton 69), Williams, L Foote - Bremner (Hutchinson 56), Cavarretta (G Foote 56), Michael
Victoria: Johansen (Eyar 76) - Missailidis (Jensen 58), Cheal, Parton, Brennan - Tanti, Martineau, Fogarty (Pfeiffer 58), Hussein (Papadopoulos 32) - Gray (Tay 64), Dudley-Smith
Photo: You can just see the young girl watching hoping that she can become a goalkeeper when she grows up as she marvels at Victoria's Line Johansen pulling off a fine save [PlessPix]
If games were won on chances, Victoria’s women would have won the Bass Strait Cup easily.
They squandered numerous chances, including a penalty and several one-on-ones with the goalkeeper.
But, games are won on goals and Tasmania took one of their few opportunities and then played heroically to keep out the visitors and lift the Cup.
Tasmanian goalkeeper Amelia Van Der Niet showed her experience and class. She saved the penalty and denied Victoria several scoring opportunities when she was left in one-on-one situations against attackers.
Her distribution was suspect on occasion, but she redeemed herself with superb saves from situations where she had given the ball straight to the opposition.
Tasmania were dangerous on the counter-attack, whereas Victoria retained possession for long periods and built up their attacks methodically, only to fall down in terms of finishing.
Photo: Victoria's Natalie Martineau (left) fights for possession with Tasmanian captain Lucy Foote [PlessPix]
Both sides demonstrated good technique, tactical astuteness and awareness of positional play in terms of the formations they deployed.
The Victorians looked confident from the start against the nervous locals and they retained possession as they probed for weaknesses, but the Tasmanians quickly grew braver and more adventurous.
In the 5th minute, Tasmania created their first chance when Ellie Gavalas released Innocent Michael down the left and her accurate cross found Jessie Williams, whose shot was well saved by Line Johansen in the Victorian goal.
A minute later, Louisa Marmion blazed high over the bar for Tasmania as the home side grew in confidence.
The Victorians were very mobile up front, with Brittany Dudley-Smith and Leigh Gray particularly elusive and dangerous, although Tasmania’s back-four of Isabella Gee, Hanna Manuela, Caitlin Storay and Louisa Marmion were up to the challenge and defended cleverly and solidly.
Photo: Victoria's Leigh Gray (left) in pursuit of Tasmania's Caitlin Storay [PlessPix]
In the 12th minute, Van Der Niet turned a shot by Dudley-Smith wide for a corner.
Tasmania dealt with the corner and Van Der Niet immediately turned defence into attack. The ball was at the other end in an instant and the result was a goal as Rani Cavarretta left Alex Cheal sprawled on the ground and took on Johansen. The keeper parried Cavarretta’s initial shot, but Cavarretta rolled the rebound into the unguarded net to put the home side ahead.
It was almost 2-0 in the 17th minute when a terrible misunderstanding at the back by Victoria almost let Williams in to score.
The Victorians knew they were in a game by now and increased the tempo. In the 18th minute, Dudley-Smith should have scored when she got onto the end of a magnificent cross from the right, but she headed over the bar.
Photo: A battle for possession in today's game [PlessPix]
On the half-hour, Natalie Martineau’s dangerous shot took a deflection and looped over Van Der Niet’s bar.
Tasmania’s Cavarretta blazed high over the bar in the 41st minute after Williams had set her up beautifully following a corner.
Martineau was foiled at point-blank range by Van Der Niet, whose poor clearance in the 43rd minute, had only found substitute Stacey Papadopolous, who slipped the ball through to Martineau for a clear run at goal.
Victoria were awarded a penalty in stoppage time at the end of the first half when Gee fouled Dudley-Smith, but Van Der Niet saved Steph Tanti’s spot-kick.
Both sides made several substitutions during the second half in order to give their entire squads a run.
Nine minutes after the interval, Martineau again threw away the chance of an equaliser when she shot wide when facing only the goalkeeper.
In the 57th minute, Victoria won a corner, from which Christie Parton volleyed wide.
Photo: Tasmani's Ellie Gavalas (left) about to be challenged by Victoria's Brittany Dudley-Smith [PlessPix]
The Victorian back-four of Melissa Missailidis, Cheal, Parton and Erin Brennan were in control, but their midfielders and strikers were unable to penetrate the home side’s resolute defence. The Tasmanian midfielders, Williams, Gavalas and Lucy Foote were a match for their Victorian counterparts and made them work for possession.
Van Der Niet was called on again in the 62nd minute as she denied the irrepressible Dudley-Smith yet again.
Both sides had chances in the closing minutes, Sky Jensen shooting wide for Victoria and Michael hitting the side-netting in a rare Tasmanian attack.
But, it was the Tasmanians who lifted the Seasol Bass Strait Cup in the end after an entertaining and magnificent advertisement for the women’s game.
It is certainly to be hoped that this becomes an annual event.
Photo: Tasmania's Rani Cavarretta (No.8) about to score the only goal of the game [PlessPix]
Tasmania’s goalscorer, Rani Cavarretta, said:
“It was really exciting to win that game. We fought hard.
“We didn’t know what to expect and we’re so happy to come away with the win.
“Having the crowd behind us really helped as well.
“The girls came out and played their game, which is really important. We tried to play the ball around and, in the end, we came out on top and we’re really, really happy with that.”
Photo: Tasmanian co-coach Michael Foote [PlessPix]
Tasmania’s co-coach, Michael Foote, said:
“We couldn’t be happier. We said before the game they’re a totally unknown quantity.
“We didn’t know what to expect and we’re over the moon. We matched it well with them.
“We knew it wasn’t the absolute cream of their crop, but we knew they were still going to be strong and with a lot more depth than we have here.
“We’re just happy that we were competitive to start with and to come away with a win was even better.
“There’s talk of it being an annual event, and we hope it is. We told our girls we hope it’s the start of something and it’ll go for a long time.”
Photo: Victoria's coach, Shaun Parton [PlessPix]
Victoria’s coach, Shaun Parton, said:
“If I was a spectator and had nothing to do with either team, I would have honestly thought that the yellows [Victoria] deserved at least a draw.
“A penalty miss, multiple one-on-ones, but credit to Tasmania. They did very well.
“Their goalie was exceptional. Didn’t do anything wrong for the whole game. The shots were in and around a good area for her, but I thought they defended very well and we finished poorly.
“The whole second half we were camped in their half but just couldn’t score. That happens in soccer matches.
“It’s three o’clock now. At 5 o’clock I don’t think we would have scored.”
Photo: Tasmania's Georgia Foote (right) gets a pass away [PlessPix]
Photo: Victoria on the attack against Tasmania [PlessPix]