Match Day 3 review

Western Suburb 4 – Waterside Karori 1

WS: Elijah Just 35, Ben Sippola 45+1, 58, Alex Clayton 47

WK: Tor Davenport-Peterson 40





Reporter: Tony Bissell


Wests Formation (4-3-3) WK Formation (3-5-2)

Isaac Tetteh

Alex Clayton, Erik Panzer, Nando Pijnaker, Robbie Sabo

 Elijah Just, Harry Edge, Josh Rogerson

Matt Garbett, Mohamed Awad, Xavier Green 

Wests Subs:

Ben Sippola for Josh Rogerson (35 mins) – Straight swap

Sean Bright for Xavier Green (65 mins) – Elijah Just moved upfront

Jaga Scott-Greenfield for Matt Garbett (83 mins) – Straight swap


Declan Edge was able to name an unchanged starting line-up for the visit of Central League newcomers, Waterside Karori.  Another healthy crowd of about 350 were in attendance, drawn by the consistently strong and entertaining performances of the young Wests team.


WK had a similarly young squad, and in the early stages of the game adopted a 3-5-2 formation, looking to stifle Wests’ normal midfield dominance.  Indeed, WK had the confidence to play out from the back and exploit gaps in midfield whenever Wests’ forwards attempted a high press.  However, once Wests squeezed the play a bit better, WK found it increasingly difficult to hold possession, and their formation quickly changed to 5-3-2 under sustained Wests’ pressure.


WK were not helped by an early injury to key defender, Dan Restorick, who had to be carried off.  After his departure, Wests started to put a number of good moves together, with the best chance falling to Josh Rogerson after an excellent patient period of possession and a clever scooped pass from Mohamed Awad.  That chance was clipped over the bar, and unfortunately Josh Rogerson did not see much further action, incurring a knee injury, which resulted in the introduction of the swashbuckling Ben Sippola.

Wests made the inevitable breakthrough on 35 minutes when Alex Clayton’s excellent tackle and pass set Elijah Just free, and he cut inside before dispatching a firm shot in the bottom corner.


Remarkably however, the lead only lasted 5 minutes as Tor Davenport-Peterson equalised with a bullet header from Kyung Dung Kim’s free kick. Tor Davenport-Peterson was booked soon afterwards for a crude challenge on the lively Elijah Just, and then Wests regained the lead in slightly controversial circumstances in first half stoppage time.


As WK’s keeper was taking a goal kick, the referee’s whistle was heard.  WK players were then guilty of switching off, erroneously thinking that the referee was stopping play, but Wests were attacking swiftly and Elijah Just fed Ben Sippola for a drilled finish into the corner. WK were then caught out again early in the second half, as Alex Clayton went about two-third of the length of the park for an outstanding individual goal.


Within minutes, he thought he had scored a second as he thumped home a header from Robbie Sabo’s excellent cross, only for it to be ruled out for a push.


The outcome of the game was then settled within a 3-minute period, as Tor Davenport-Peterson was sent off for a second yellow card offence, and Ben Sippola netted his second goal with a neat finish after good work by Matt Garbett.

Photo: Weston Design

With 10 men, WK went into damage limitation mode, changing their formation to 5-3-1, and often having all of their players in their defensive third of the pitch.  Wests maintained their intensity whenever WK were in possession, and probably enjoyed close to 85% possession in the last 30 minutes of the game. 


Sean Bright made an impressive cameo in midfield, combining particularly well with Harry Edge, Alex Clayton and Elijah Just.  Jaga Scott-Greenfield also made an impact from the bench, setting up Ben Sippola for a potential hat-trick, but his effort was well-saved.


Elijah Just almost capped his fine display with a second goal, but his effort clipped the post, and ultimately Wests were forced to settle for the comfortable 4-1 scoreline.


Player of the Day:

3 points – Alex Clayton – Outstanding individual goal and great assist for the opening goal

2 points – Elijah Just – Live-wire and close to his creative best

1 point – Matt Garbett – Combining well with fellow strikers and midfielders. Neat work in run up to goal 4