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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Hamlett beats David Smith - Copy

Photo:  Ben Hamlett scores against Launceston City.  Hamlett's speed and aggression will worry Strikers. [PlessPix]

South Hobart should give Brisbane Strikers a real run for their money when the sides meet at South Hobart Oval at 12.30pm today in an elimination final of the nation-wide NPL Finals series.

Home-ground advantage - Brisbane are used to hard, bumpy pitches - and the wintry conditions should boost South Hobart’s chances against the Queensland outfit, who only arrived in Hobart late yesterday afternoon.

The Brisbane players will have been shocked at the Hobart temperatures after coming from a much warmer part of the country and they will certainly not have acclimatised by the time the game kicks off.

The Strikers are certainly a classy outfit, having won the Queensland NPL title for the second year in a row.

But, South Hobart are the best team in Tasmania by a country mile and won the NPL Tasmania title at a canter, 12 points ahead of the second-placed team.

South Hobart have proven pedigree.

They have appeared on the national stage several times in recent seasons and, although beaten, it has never been by a big margin.

Ken Morton’s men should give a good account of themselves and make the Strikers work for anything they might get out of this match.

The big question mark over the South Hobart side is whether former skipper Hugh Ludford plays.

He has been injured in recent weeks and has been replaced at the heart of the defence by youngster Oscar Thomas, who has more than held his own against the best opponents Tasmania has to offer.

Ludford will have to prove his fitness before being selected and his experience would be a valuable asset for the home side.

South Hobart have plenty of depth on the bench and the starting eleven should give a good account of themselves.

Brisbane Strikers changed coaches after winning this year’s title and whether this will affect them remains to be seen.

New coach Owen Baker and technical director David Large will be in charge.

This can always work two ways: Either the new coach brings instant success in the first game in charge, or the team flops because of a change in personnel.

If often works the first way and the new men in charge have been with the club for a while and chances are it will be a case of business as usual.

The Strikers go into today’s game with a loss and a win in their previous two games, but that will mean nothing as today’s match is a cup game in which anything can happen.

Likely line-ups:

South Hobart:  Kieran Brown  -  Adam Gorrie, Oscat Thomas, Daniel Brown, Liam Quaile  -  Kobe Kemp  -  Darcy Hall, Jack Turner, Nick Morton, Alex Walter  -  Ben Hamlett  (Subs:  Alex Leszczynski, Mark Moncur, Hugh Ludford, Connor Kass, Loic Feral)

Brisbane Strikers: Zac Speedy  -  Sam Knight, Greig Henslee, Jake Marshall, Hiroki Omori  -  Ethan Docherty,  Michael Angus, Jake McLean, Michael Lee  -  Luke Marsh, Jeremy Stewart  (Subs:  Finn Matheson, Lachlan Weier, Ryan Palmer, Zachary Maltby, Fraser Eller)

Comments   

+1 #5 Anon 2017-09-17 08:41
Walter hard bumpy pitches = better passing and skills on a good pitch that would be an advantage for Brisbane not a disadvantage.
The temperature difference that can go either way but with our fresher cleaner air you would assume it would suit Brisbane again if the game was played in Qld South would definitely be at a disadvantage.
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+15 #4 Theatre 2017-09-17 05:56
Unlucky south good comeback in 2nd half but they were really good on the ball.good attendance but south supporters always too quiet it's like being at the theatre not a futbol match be the twelfth man they needed it in first half
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0 #3 Back to School 2017-09-17 04:19
Enough said!
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+3 #2 Anon 2017-09-17 03:08
Quoting Realistic:
Love your enthusiasm for south Hobart Walter, but I think Brisbane strikers will win this quite easily.
Not by much, but they'll progress at the expense of south Hobart.

Walter always supports Tasmania clubs so let's get behind South as Tasmanias rep for this comp.
It's not going to be easy against any mainland club for any Tas club but it will be a game worth watching for the skills of Brisbane will shine.
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+15 #1 Realistic 2017-09-16 22:52
Love your enthusiasm for south Hobart Walter, but I think Brisbane strikers will win this quite easily.
Not by much, but they'll progress at the expense of south Hobart.
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