NSW on top of Men's and Women's tables

New South Wales are currently topping the ladders in both the men's and women's National Futsal Championships.

New South Wales are currently topping the ladders in both the men's and women's National Futsal Championships.

Round 2 Victoria 6 (Fernando De Moraes 7-, 29-, Jonathan Barrientos 8-, Adam Cooper 9-, Carlos Munoz 15-, Vadim Mazurskiy 25- (pen)) South Australia 0 Victoria stormed to a 6-0 hammering of South Australia in the opening match of the Open Men-s competition on Day 2.

It didn-t take long for Victoria to hit their stride as they ripped into South Australia from the outset showing a ruthlessness and technical prowess that their opponents simply could not match. The Victorians appeared a lot fresher than in their opening match and took firm command of the contest with a three-goal burst within the space of three first-half minutes.

Fernando set the scene, dictating the pace early on, before scoring a sublime opener. That set the scene and when Jonathon Barrientos and Adam Cooper added to the Fernando strike Victoria was virtually home and dry by the nine minute mark. They still kept attacking though and the impressive Carlos Munoz swept home at the back post after another rapid-fire break to take the score to 4-0 at the interval. There was little let up in the second half as Victoria kept up the offensive.

Tasmania 1 (Liam Scott 19-) NSW Metro 2 (Jonathon Kontalis 8-, Miles Downie 24-)

NSW Metro remained unbeaten after two rounds following a tense and exciting 2-1 win over Tasmania at the AIS Training Hall.

Tasmania battled hard and was unfortunate not to gain a point from a top-drawer match. It was NSW Metro who started the better of the two teams and deservedly went ahead in the eighth minute as Jonathan Kontalis, hero of the narrow win over the ACT yesterday, found time and space in front of goal to squeeze his shot past Liam Ferrall in the Tasmanian goal.

Tasmania though are floating on a wave of confidence after getting off to a winning start yesterday with an emphatic win over South Australia and they hit back with a stunning strike as Liam Scott took aim from distance and crashed a thunderbolt high into the top corner past the agile Roberto Maiorana in the NSW goal to make it 1-1 on the cusp of half-time. There was little to separate the teams in the second half either with good openings rare. However, NSW did manage to find a way past Ferrall in the 24th minute. Miles Downie received a cut-back and lashed a firm, low drive that flashed past the diving Ferrall and nestled in the bottom corner. Later, Nathan Niski fired over when well-placed in front of goal but it was to matter not as NSW held on for a valuable three points.

ACT 2 (Michael Reeve 17-, 25-) Queensland 2 (Scott Fenn 4-, Lucas Cordeiro 30-)

ACT and Queensland shared the spoils in a feisty encounter that saw four goals, a plethora of yellow cards and the ACT Head Coach sent to the stands for dissent. Queensland, playing their first match after having the bye in Round 1, looked sharp and bright from the opening whistle with Giancarlo Romano forcing Angelo Konstantinou into a fine save in the 2nd minute.

The ACT-s international ‘keeper could do little just two minutes later though as Scott Fenn broke away and slotted through his legs to give the Maroons the lead.

The ACT attempted to hit back and went close through the efforts of Pat Ross-Magee and Daniel Fulton and it was Fulton who was instrumental in bringing his team level hurdling two desperate tackles and drawing the ‘keeper to give Michael Reeve a simple tap-in. Moments later Reeve hit the post with a shot on the turn as the half ended 1-1. Needing a victory the ACT pushed at the start of the second half and, after a Ross-Magee volley came back off the underside of the crossbar, they took the lead as Reeve hammered in his second of the match.

Queensland hit back though with ten minutes to play as Lucas Cordeiro intercepted a stray pass and coolly slotted past Konstantinou for the equaliser to set-up a grandstand finale. Both teams went close to a winner but, in the end, had to settle for a point apiece.

BYE: Western Australia

Round 3 NSW Metro 0 Victoria 3 (Adam Cooper 11-, Fernando De Moraes 13-, Reuben Langerak 21-) Victoria put down a firm statement of intent as they ripped asunder the reigning champions NSW Metro with a convincing 3-0 victory in a performance that marks them down as the early favourites for the 2013 title. The margin of victory in no way flattered Victoria who dominated possession in the opening half and only some excellent zone defending from the NSW Metro outfit denied them the space to create clear cut chances and really test Roberto Maiorana in the Metro goal.

Surprisingly therefore the best chance in the first quarter belonged to Metro as a slick break saw an effort from Takuya Umeda blocked by Victorian ‘keeper Christos Apostolakis. Victoria-s weight of possession was sure to tell though and they duly took the lead in the 11th minute as Adam Cooper found the back of the net. Two minutes later they took control of the match on the score board as Fernando got in behind to clip the ball over Maiorana and make it 2-0. Their grip on proceedings became even firmer only a minute into the second half as Reuben Langerak took aim from distance and thumped home the third goal that emphasised Victoria-s lead and they were easy winners from there on in.

Queensland 2 (Giancarlo Romano 9-, Sean Byrne 17-) Tasmania 1 (Adam McKeown 38-)

Queensland-s impressive start to the 2013 championships continued as they defeated Tasmania 2-1 thanks to a pair of first half goals. In a fast and furious encounter Queensland emerged the stronger in the first half as they hounded Tasmania whenever they had possession. And, whilst Tasmania was a touch profligate with their chances, the Maroons were less inclined to pass up openings.

Even so there was a touch of fortune about the opening goal scored in the ninth minute as Giancarlo Romano shot from an angle but saw the ball deflect into the net. Tasmania responded with good efforts from Jacob Clamp and Joshua Quan, the latter really catching hold of a strike from a corner, but on both occasions Brendan Pickett in the Queensland goal was equal to the task to repel the shots. S

ean Byrne was then able to put Queensland 2-0 ahead with a finely taken shot three minutes before the break as the Maroons upped the ante. The second half carried on in much the same vein as the first as Queensland created the better but Tasmania battled hard throughout. Impressive in white were Quan and Liam Scott with Scott, in particular, a bundle of energy as he scampered across the court. And it was Scott-s corner that led to Adam McKeown pulling one back late on but Queensland held on to win.

South Australia 0 Western Australia 5 (Daniel Micevski 7-, Ciro Celulari 9-, Andres Bouzinekis 11-, Luke Tidy 19-, David Micevski 37-)

Western Australia swamped South Australia 5-0 to keep up their steady progress towards the semi-finals. Western Australia took a while to get the measure of their opponents but when they did they struck three times in four minutes. Daniel Micevski opened the scoring in the 7th minute, much to the delight of the bench, and it was 2-0 only a couple of minutes later following a quite brilliant goal from Ciro Celulari.

Celulari burst onto a flick from Diego Garcia at pace to race away and, under pressure, slot past the exposed Cameron Rogowski. Western Australia-s perfect start continued in the 11th minute as they broke at speed again to allow Andres Bouzinekis the opportunity to slide a finish into the corner of the net from in front of goal.

And they made certain of the points by the half-time whistle as Luke Tidy blazed home after a ricochet fell kindly for him outside the penalty area. Haris Vuckic, returning from suspension, almost pulled one back for South Australia but, after cleverly beating his man with a dummy, saw his shot saved by Glen Sheldon. Not to be outdone by his brother Daniel, David Micevski notched his name onto the score card in the 37th minute to cap a wonderful display. Awarded a free kick outside the box, Micevski thrashed the ball home, at the second attempt to bring up five for Western Australia and condemn South Australia to another heavy defeat.

BYE: ACT

Round 4 Victoria 0 Queensland 3 (Giancarlo Romano 11-, Scott Fenn 15-, Lucas Cordeiro 25-)

After Victoria had underlined their championship credentials with a win over NSW Metro in the morning so Queensland laid down a marker of their desire to take home the Open Men-s crown with a stunning 3-0 defeat of the previously unbeaten Victorians in the opening match of the afternoon session. The Maroons, who had a bye on the first day, looked fresh and sharp heading into the match and, after withstanding some early pressure Queensland roared into action with a brace of goals within four minutes of each other. Giancarlo Romano got the ball rolling with the first goal in the 11th minute, his second of the day, and he was joined amongst the scorers by Scott Fenn four minutes later. Fenn, who had scored against the ACT earlier in the day, netted his second of the championship to put Queensland in the driving seat. Any hopes that Victoria had of getting back into the match were dashed five minutes into the second half as Lucas Cordeiro joined Romano and Fenn on two goals in the tournament with another sharp finish as the Maroons stormed towards the top of the table alongside the vanquished Victoria.

Tasmania 1 (Andrew Clark 28-) ACT 6 (own goal 13-, Michael Reeve 15-, Stephen Domenici 21-, 31-, Robbie Cattanach 24-, Callum Smith 27-)

The ACT-s hopes of making the semi-finals received a welcome shot in the arm as they blasted aside the challenge of Tasmania in the early evening match in the AIS Training Hall. The 2012 beaten finalists, who generally start this competition slowly, turned up the heat on Tasmania with a superb display. They needed a helping hand to get them on the way though as an own goal on thirteen minutes put ACT ahead to the delight of the home crowd. And it got better for the ACT two minutes later as Michael Reeve bagged his third goal of the competition to make it 2-0 at the interval. Tasmania really needed to score first in the second stanza but it was the hosts who did just that as Stephen Domenici, Cooma Tigers Grand Final football hero, turned futsal goal scorer with a wonderful effort. Robbie Cattanach, nursing a knock, made it 4-0 and Callum Smith added a fifth as ACT turned on the style.

Tasmania kept plucking away though and deservedly pulled one back a minute later through the talented Andrew Clark but that proved a mere blip for the ACT as they completed a comfortable 6-1 win as Domenici added his second to round off a good performance and sound a warning to the other competitors.

Western Australia 1 (Daniel Micevski 40-) NSW Metro 2 (Sam Perre 8-, Jarrod Basger 29-)

NSW Metro ensured they ended Day 2 of the Open Men-s Championship on top of the pile with a 2-1 win over Western Australia in the final match of the Day. The defending champions have hardly been in sparkling form in their first four matches but have ridden their luck and showed bags of desire and determination. And they needed to be full of grit against a Western Australian side that hustled and harried at every possible moment. Metro got a settling early goal when the skilful Sam Perre managed to find the target and that was a narrow lead that they were able to take into the interval. A 1-0 advantage is slender at any time though and Western Australia pressed hard for an equaliser. It was therefore with great relief that Metro went 2-0 up in the 29th minute via a goal from Futsalroo international Jarrod Basger. That was to prove the match winner as NSW Metro survived a late onslaught, and a last minute goal from Daniel Micevski to claim the win.

ACT 4 (Rachel Crittenden 1-, 15-, Louisa Marzotto 8-, Becky Roche 16-) Victoria 1 (Stephanie Tanti 33-)

ACT opened the 2013 FFA National Futsal Championship Open Women-s competition in some style with a comfortable 4-1 win over Victoria in what was a real statement of intent from Kirstian Collins- team. The ACT had a dream start to the match taking the lead after only twelve seconds.

From the kick off they burst onto the offensive and Rachel Crittenden latched onto a neat flick to stab the ball past the shell-shocked Victorian goalkeeper Candice Sallama. The goal settled any early nerves and the home team proceeded to dominate play in the opening half and deservedly doubled the lead in the 8th minute.

It was bizarre goal though as ACT goalkeeper Louisa Marzotto collected a Victorian attempt and, spotting her opposite number well off her line, sent an inch-perfect drop kick arching over Sallama-s head and into the net. It was almost the perfect first twenty minutes from the ACT who added to their tally with two goals in a minute as Rachel Crittenden broke away to score before Becky Roche hammered in the fourth sixty seconds later to send ACT 4-0 up at the break. Victoria came out fighting after the break with Emily Hulbert a stand out but the ACT was in a resolute mood and was proving tough to break down. Victoria deserved some reward for a better second half and Stephanie Tanti pulled one back but it made little difference to the final outcome as the ACT romped home.

NSW Regional 0 NSW Metro 4 (Jo-Anne Saliba 21-, Kathryn Mladineo 32-, Zoeie Redman 34-, 36-)

NSW Metro emerged as 3-0 victors from their opening match of the championships but was made it work hard for the points by their Regional counterparts before running away with the tie.

The All-NSW affair between the rebranded Regional and Metro is always a tight affair with no quarter asked or given and this was no exception with little to choose between them from the off. It was Metro that threatened first with Claire Walsh forcing Regional ‘keeper Lydia McGlinchey into a good save with her feet whilst Renee Tomkins was always a threat with her incisive running and strong shooting. Good openings were at a premium though with neither side able to fashion any real clear-cut chance as defence-s dominated with the half ending all-square at 0-0.

Having gone through twenty minutes without a goal it took just 45 seconds for the deadlock to be broken in the second half. It was Metro who made the breakthrough, Jo-Anne Saliba showing poise and control to snaffle a half-chance that broke her way as Metro attacked from the outset. Zoeie Redman went close to making it two in the 30th minute with a well-placed shot that eluded a clutch of players and was unfortunate to bounce back into play off the base of the post, McGlinchey claiming the rebound ahead of a lurking Doris Osman. But the Regional ‘keeper could do little to prevent Kathryn Mladineo in the 32nd minute as Metro sealed the points before a late Redman double rounded out the win.