Herald Women’s Premier League Round 11 Preview

May 17th, 2018



Match of the Round

Merewether v South Wallsend

Sunday 20th May, 2:30 pm

Myamblah Oval

Last start: Merewether beat Wallsend 3-0, South Wallsend beat New Lambton 6-5.

Position on ladder: Merewether 2nd, 19 points; South Wallsend 5th, 9 points

Squad news

Merewether is without captain Lori Depczynski and South Wallsend are expected to field last weekend’s starting line-up.

What the coaches say

Merewether coach Cass Koppen says her side is well aware of the damage South Wallsend can cause when at full strength.

“Southy had a big win against New Lambton last weekend and if they have their full squad on the park, they are a danger to any side in the competition,” Koppen said.

“Obviously they have changed their positioning and playing style so we will need to shut down their midfield early.”

South Wallsend coach Brad Parkes is hoping the momentum will flow following last weekend’s win over New Lambton.

“It’s great to have some consistency and this game is another challenge against one of the top sides in the competition,” Parkes said.

“We are looking forward to testing ourselves against Merewether to see if we can keep progressing as a side.”

Bottom line

Merewether have the best defence in the League and shot-stopper Alison Logue will be hoping to keep it that way. The loss of captain Lori Depczynski is a big one but United still have plenty of experience across the park. The hosts will be hoping to increase their top two lead which should produce the clinical performance Merewether are known for. South Wallsend will be hungry for the three points and need to win to keep in touch with the top four. The Wolves proved they are capable of competing last weekend and if they play with the same spirit and urgency, they are well on their way to causing another upset.


Warners Bay v Thornton

Sunday 20th May, 2:30 pm

John Street Oval

Last start: Warners Bay beat Adamstown 4-2, Thornton lost 4-1 to Wallsend

Position on ladder: Warners Bay 1st, 22 points; Thornton last, nil points

Squad news

Warners Bay may change their starting line-up closer to the match depending on niggling injuries and Thornton is expected to be at full-strength.

What the coaches say

Warners Bay player-coach Cass Davis is asking her side for consistency following a lacklustre second-half performance last weekend.

“Thornton will be out to get the three points so we know that this game is as important as any,” Davis said.

“We need to be more consistent with the majority of the game instead of patches throughout and I will be drilling that into the girls this weekend.”

Thornton coach Rob Richardson says his side is feeling fresh after having the bye last weekend.

“The week off has been good as it gave some of the girls a chance to recover from injury,” Richardson said.

“We are more than aware of how strong Warners Bay are but we will be concentrating on playing our game.”

Bottom line

Warners Bay was ruthless against Thornton last time they met and they have the best attack in the competition which makes them a difficult opponent. The Bay is always difficult to contain in the front third as they thrive off their wing and centre midfield which is what makes their attack so dynamic. Thornton may lack ‘star quality’ but they are a team who love to play for each other and continually turn up each week despite being the only side yet to win a game. The Redback’s have shown glimpses of good football but struggle to execute opportunities and put goals away when it counts. It would be dangerous to discount a side eager for their first win of the season but the quality and experience of Warners Bay should see them take the three points.


Adamstown v Wallsend

Sunday 20th May, 2:30 pm

The Gardens

Last start: Adamstown lost 4-2 to Warners Bay, Wallsend lost 3-0 to Merewether

Position on ladder: Wallsend 4th, 13 points; Adamstown 6th, 7 points

Squad news

Adamstown has been dealt a cruel blow with keeper Olivia Sneddon out for the next 4-6 weeks due to a tear in her PCL. U20’s keeper Natalie Wiseman will join first grade and strike weapon Lauren Allan returns from the United States. There are no changes to Wallsend.

What the coaches say

Adamstown coach Paul Devitis is hoping there will be more effort from his side on Sunday.

“We will be looking to put in a strong performance and get a positive result,” Devitis said.

“Both clubs try to play a good brand of football so it should be a good spectacle.

“This weekend’s game against Wallsend is huge for us and the girls are up for the challenge.”

Wallsend coach Marc Hingston says he has been impressed with the standard of football his side has shown in the last two weeks.

“We have spent time with our attacking players this week to work on technique in front of goal,” Hingston said.

“The girls were hitting the target constantly and their confidence is starting to grow.

“Our stat of 46 shots in two games for four goals doesn’t read well but it says a lot about creating so many chances.

“Hopefully with a focus on finishing this week we can get a reward for playing well.”

Bottom line

Wallsend escaped with bragging rights over Adamstown back in Round four but it may not be smooth sailing this weekend. Adamstown has had terrible luck with injuries so far and the loss of Olivia Sneddon will hurt their defence massively. There is nobody more capable of filling the void than Natalie Wiseman and excitement is building for her performance on Sunday. The welcomed return of Lauren Allan from America is a huge bonus for the side as she scored 16 goals in eight matches last season for the Buds. Wallsend boasts quality across the park and has shown in the past they have the ability to compete with the best. It’s an exciting matchup that could go either way and executing opportunities will be the deciding factor.

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