Aussie duo a drawcard at NSL launch

Normal, Sports

A TWO-man team from newcomers, North Queensland Fury in  the Hyundai A-League in Australia will be arriving today to hold talks with the PNG Football Association (PNGFA).
NSL board chairman John Kapi Natto said yesterday that North Qld Fury FC franchise owner Don Matheson and his Scottish manager Ian Ferguson will be special guests at the 2009-10 Telikom National Soccer League (NSL) launch tomorrow night.
Ferguson stood-in for former Liverpool and England international Robby Fowlers who was injured last week.
Matheson and Ferguson apologized on behalf of Fowler, who has wide following in the country, for not attending the event.
He hinted that both will be holding talks on how to help improve the semi-professional league and, hopefully develop a mutual understanding between Queensland Fury and PNG’s  NS L.
Ferguson said he was optimistic that something worthwhile can come out of the meeting set for Thursday.
Kapi Natto has also thanked seven companies, Hekari Holdings Limited, Rheema Limited, Niugini Builders Ltd, CMSS (PNG), International Food Corporation (Besta), Gigira Laitep and Welgris Fuel Distributors (Niupetro) for backing the NSL competition.
He also said the teams confirmed for this season were defending champions Hekari United, CMSS Tigers, Eastern Stars, Gelle Hills (Port Moresby), University Lae, Gigira Laitepo Morobe, Besta Parakings (PNG U20) and Niupetro Fox (Madang).
The games are expected to start on Saturday with Niupetro Fox to clash with Gelle Hills in Madang while Eastern Stars take on University Inter FC, CMSS Tigers meet University Lae and Gigira Laitepo Morobe FC face Hekari United all three matches to be played in Port Moresby.
Kapi Natto said the NSL competition was getting bigger and tougher each year with influx of international players from Solomon Islands and Fiji.
The acquisition of these players from the region is a sign that they have confidence in the standard of the NSL competition in PNG.
“NSL is getting better every year,” he said.