Stars stamp their authority over Fox

Normal, Sports


EASTERN Stars have asserted their authority over a disorganised and unfit Madang Fox defeating them, 5-1 in the second round of Telikom National Soccer League competition at the Lloyd Robson Oval in Port Moresby.
In other matches, MRDC Hekari United found the going tough against Petro Souths but managed to beat them 2-0 at National Sports Institute while Tukoko Lae University pipped young Besta PNG United 2-1.
Coming off a bye last weekend, the Port Moresby-based Milne Bay franchise engineered by Hekari rejects Cyril Muta, Tagaia Lepani, Enoch Abraham and Danny Banaba, including Jeremy Yasasa and Joshua Niebo, proved too strong for the visitors.
Muta, who was released by Hekari United, had made way for Alvin Singh, set up the first goal when he floated the ball to Abraham on the flank, who sent a cross to stylish Paul Wale.
Wale unselfishly headed the ball to unmarked Banaba who headed in for the opening goal.
A minute later, former Koloale FC Timothy Joe extended the lead before his compatriot Wale put Stars in front 3-0 with a spot kick after Fox goalkeeper Anton Pipi brought down Raymond Gunemba in the penalty box.
After sensing that the game was slipping away, coach Bob Morris made some changes, bringing in former CMSS Tigers and South African Hugo Kamba to tighten up their defence.
In the second half, Madang Fox striker Felix Bondaluk pulled one back following the confusion in Stars’ goal area before Muta scored and replacement Andrew Marampau Jr celebrated his return to Stars with a shocker to seal the match for host team 5-1.
The poor performance by Madang Fox could be attributed to the players spread out in two centres Port Moresby and Madang rather than having them all based in Madang.
It was evident that despite the injection of Desmond Sow, Frank Tulem and Michael Lohai in the second half, they made little impact for visitors.
Despite the loss to Hekari United in Goroka, Petro Souths coach Matthew Witu said last night that he was impressed with his boys’ performance.
“My boys were impressive and I owe it to them for putting a brave effort, especially in the second half to hold the champions scoreless.
“We had our chances but we could not put them away,” he added.
Witu said Besta U20 United goalkeeper reject, Jacob Senat was a stand out denying any chances for Hekari United to extend their lead in the second half.
He also said the boys panicked in the opening half which resulted in the two goals scored by Hekari United.
“However, I kept reminding them to take the match as another ordinary game and it paid dividends. We restricted them from scoring more goals,” Witu said. 
After the weekend’s round two matches: Hekari United are on six points followed by  Tukoko University four, Eastern Stars three, Madang Fox one, Besta United one, Petro Souths one and Gigira Laitepo Morobe Kumuls 0.