One of New Zealand's greatest footballers was honoured in the best possible way on Saturday, in the inaugural Waiheke Festival of Football.

Auckland City and Hamilton Wanderers played off for the Steve Sumner Cup, in honour of the All Whites legend who lost his battle with prostate cancer in February.

The reigning Oceania champions beat the Hamilton side 5-2 in a well contested match.

The Ricki Herbert-coached Hamilton team only had their first training session last Tuesday and looked badly off the pace in the first half.

Advertisement

Auckland City scored five and could have had another three or four, but Wanderers showed much more fight in the second half.

The Auckland side displayed their usual mix of precision and panache, with some of the young players recently signed from Declan Edge's Ole Academy showing their promise.

Callum McGowatt grabbed a first half hat trick, and fellow teenager Owen Parker-Price showed some clever touches in midfield.

Emiliano Tade sparked a lot on attack, while recent All White Liam Graham and former international Kris Bright played the first half for Auckland City.

But the result was almost immaterial today, in what was a wonderful occasion in the picturesque setting of Onetangi Sports Park. Along with remembering Sumner, the day was about celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Waiheke United Football club. The team based at the Onetangi Sports Park have had an extraordinary run in recent years, achieving six successive promotions, based on a cosmopolitan mix of players from Argentina, Spain, France, Uruguay, Chile and Japan.

The Waiheke United side has not lost a home game in three years and their vocal fan base, which has been featured on Argentinian and Spanish television, was in full voice with drums and songs. They went home happy, as Waiheke won the curtain raiser 1-0 over the Auckland City Academy side.

Today was also a gathering of some big names of the local game. Apart from Herbert, Wynton Rufer and Noel Barkley took part in an all-star seven a side game and 1982 All Whites coach Kevin Fallon was an interested spectator.

Auckland City 5 (C McGowatt 3, E Tade, C Howieson)
Hamilton Wanderers 2 (I Younes Falfan, X Pratt)