Top four power ahead in WaiBOP football premiership

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Otumoetai player Juan Pablo Rosende, left. Rotorua United (blue) vs Otumoetai, club football at Neil Hunt Park. 16 July 2016 Rotorua Daily Post Photograph by Ben Fraser.
Otumoetai player Juan Pablo Rosende, left. Rotorua United (blue) vs Otumoetai, club football at Neil Hunt Park. 16 July 2016 Rotorua Daily Post Photograph by Ben Fraser.

Upsets were in short supply during the latest round of the Loaded WaiBOP Premiership as the top four all won again, while Melville United moved back into the top five following victory in the league's only Hamilton derby.

Ngongotaha beat Rotorua United 4-1 in the main game. Second placed Cambridge beat Katikati Ambria 6-1 with Silver Kelder scoring for Katikati. Matamata Swifts, who have played a game more than their two rivals, remained level on points with Cambridge after defeating Tauranga Boys' College 3-0 at home.

Otumoetai First Credit Union put three past dead-last Tauranga City United in a match they should have used to increase their goal difference. Juan Pablo Rosende with two and Dave Wright got the goals.

Melville United had a 4-2 win at Waikato Unicol while Old Blues won their third game in four with a 2-0 victory at SGS Papamoa. Geoff Rickard and Hayden Fowlke hit first half goals to give their side victory and all but secure their Premiership status for another season.

The WaiBOP Championship promotion picture is not much clearer as the top three sides all won again. Leaders West Hamilton United and third placed Taupo notched up big home wins over Old Blues reserves and Otumoetai reserves respectively, while second placed Te Awamutu squeezed past Matamata reserves.

Tokoroa drew 1-1 with Cambridge reserves, Ngongotaha reserves beat Hamilton Wanderers 4-2 while Waikato Unicol reserves beat Whakatane Town 2-1.

Northern United completed the home and away portion of the WaiBOP Women's Premier League with a 6-0 win at bottom side Waikato Unicol to top the table on 28 points.

Northern finished one point ahead of Rotorua United, who defeated Bay of Plenty rivals Otumoetai Bay SportsMed 3-1 at Neil Hunt Park. It was some form of revenge for Rotorua, whose 1-0 defeat at Otumoetai two weeks ago stymied their chances of topping the table.

A Maddi Ollington double, and a goal from Danni McKenzie got the job done for Rotorua, while pre-season favourites Otumoetai will be hoping for an improvement in form when the league splits in a couple of weeks.

Otumoetai can still move into third when they play their final catch up game, at home against Hamilton Wanderers, next weekend.

In the other Premier League match, Claudelands Rovers Craft won 3-0 at Melville United, the side that currently occupies third spot.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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