UWA beat Shamrock Rovers in nine-goal thriller

Andrew Xydas plays through Bryce Conway.
Andrew Xydas plays through Bryce Conway.

A LATE revival from UWA saw them collect their first win of the season 5-4 against Shamrock Rovers FC after Rovers quickly overturned a 3-0 half time lead early in the second half.

Both sides headed into the fixture undefeated in their last two league games and were looking to reduce the distance between themselves and the top few sides.

It was UWA who started the stronger side and five minutes had barely passed when Michael Vlasich put the home side 1-0 up.

The centre back intercepted a pass and charged down the field before playing a neat one-two that put him just outside the box; the defender’s shot was nothing short of unstoppable as the ball riffled into the top corner.

Shortly afterwards UWA doubled their lead through Lloyd Prout and extended that lead just before halftime courtesy of Alex Kretowicz.

John O’Reilly had his boys fired up after the interval and they responded almost instantaneously.

A free kick on the right wing was met by a close range header, leaving goalkeeper Ranjeet Sekhon with no chance and bringing Rover’s back into the game.

UWA were still recovering from the goal when Rovers hit them again to reduce the gap to one goal.

The away side were playing with newfound confidence and their comeback was almost complete when they drew level moments later.

A brisk counter attack down the right wing left UWA short at the back and Rovers capitalised.

With the scores tied at 3-3, Shamrock was looking likely to complete their comeback, and surely enough they did.

A free kick on half way was played to the corner flag, which was chased down superbly by the Rover’s winger who crossed into the box.

The ball was not held by Sekhon and the Shamrock forward was quick to capitalise on the keeper’s spill and make it 4-3 to the away side.

With his side struggling to create going forward, Janssen used all his substitutions and brought on the midfield trio of Richard Olsen, Marc Zagami and Bryce Conway to bring a bit of vigour into the middle of the park.

The substitutions breathed new life into the young UWA side and they begun to start playing the brand of football that saw them 3-0 up in the first half.

With 10 minutes to go UWA’s pressure was finally rewarded with an equaliser.

Conor Devlin and Xydas were able to carve through the Rovers midfield with quick passing before playing the ball into the feet of Kretowicz.

The striker was quick to turn his marker and slotted the ball into the bottom corner to make it 4-4.

Both sides were hungry for a win but it was UWA who stole the three points in the final minutes of the game.

Kretowicz finished Rovers off after a touch and finish from a superb cross-field pass from Black.

UWA’s first win of the season sees them climb into the top half of the table into sixth spot, while Shamrock slips down to 9th.

UWA will travel to Hartfield Park this weekend where they will look to inflict more pain upon Forrestfield United SC, who sit second from bottom on the ladder.