Soccer: Junior All Whites open with win

New Zealand have opened their campaign to qualify for the Fifa under-20 World Cup with a 5-0 win over Papua New Guinea in Fiji.

A brace of goals to Louis Fenton in the opening stages of the match set up the win, with a further first half effort to Hamish Watson and second half strikes by substitute Dale Higham and Tyler Boyd rounding out the scoring.

Junior All Whites coach Chris Milicich was pleased to get off to a winning start but praised Papua New Guinea following the match.

''[We scored] five good goals against what was a very competitive unit,'' Milicich said. "Their goalkeeper had a great match. They worked hard, they pressed us high and caused us some problems at times.''

Fenton opened the scoring from the penalty spot after Watson was fouled on five minutes, and the Wellington Phoenix forward doubled the advantage shortly after slotting home past the impressive Charles Lepani.

Watson then headed home from a corner shortly before halftime to send New Zealand into the interval three goals to the good.

Two second half substitutes combined for the fourth goal, with YoungHeart Manawatu's Dale Higham heading home from Ryan Thomas' cross on 79 minutes. Boyd grabbed the fith two minutes later, dusting himself off to slot home New Zealand's second penalty after being bundled over in the box.

Milicich and his side will face the difficult afternoon conditions in their next match with Vanuatu which kicks off at 3pm (NZT) on Saturday.


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