Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Four out for Wairarapa United

By Gary Caffell
Wairarapa United will be missing four of their regular players when they meet Wellington United in a Central League catch-up football game at Memorial Park, Masterton, on Thursday, and three of them won’t appear again this season.
Headed overseas are Nicolas Rabb (England), Godwin Addai (Canada) and Tam DiMario (United States), and their contribution to the 2016 squad has ended while star striker Sam Mason-Smith will sit out this particular game.
For player-coach Paul Ifill the loss of so many regulars does leave his team, a “bit light” on playing numbers but he is still optimistic they can compete strongly against a Wellington United side which has a very similar form line, sitting as they are in seventh place on the CL points table with 17, just one point ahead of eighth-placed Wairarapa United who beat them 2-1 in their first round fixture.
“We’re still playing to win….absolutely,” Ifill said. “We’ve got three league games to go and the aim is to win the lot.”
A highlight for Wairarapa United will be the debut in the starting line-up of promising youngster Liam Heard who will be at left back.
He will be part of a defensive structure which will be confronted by a young but pacy Wellington United forward line.
“Defence is going to be important, we need to be very tight there,” Ifill said.
It will be crucial too that Wairarapa United take full advantage of their scoring chances, something they have failed to do all too often this season.
The fact Ifill is somewhere near full fitness again and will lead the attack has to be a plus and along with another couple of experienced campaigners in James Hoyt and Cory Chettleburgh the level of impact they have on proceedings could well decide the end result.
Kick-off tonight is at 7.15pm.

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