Wellington Phoenix 2 Newcastle Jets 0

Remember, remember the fifth of November as the night the Phoenix finally sparked to life.

After opening the A-League season barely able to fire a shot, the Wellington attack ignited in a manner they have long expected, turning on-paper promise to on-field results against the Newcastle Jets.

Roy Krishna scored twice at Westpac Stadium to give his side their maiden victory of the campaign, having failed to earn a point from their first four games.

The win provided a positive end to a week that begun with a 6-1 hammering in Melbourne and snapped a spell of futility for the Phoenix at at the Cake Tin, emerging triumphant at home after suffering six consecutive defeats.


And equally pleasing for coach Ernie Merrick would have been the end of an even more ignominious run. By keeping out the Jets tonight, the Phoenix kept their first clean sheet since January, a previously porous streak of 18 straight games.

It was a win they really needed, not least at all because of their ugly record. Merrick will next week once again lose his All Whites contingent to international duty, increasing the degree of difficulty for the trip to Central Coast.

One man likely to return against the Mariners is Roly Bonevacia, the Dutchman who was excluded from the starting XI for the first time in his Phoenix career. And, given what eventually transpired, it was difficult to argue with Merrick's selection.

With Alex Rodriguez and Vince Lia at its base, the Phoenix midfield at times toyed with the Jets, forming triangles and linking well with short passes. That was especially true in the opening half hour, as the home side established a level of control they never really relinquished.

Gui Finkler was pulling the strings and Kosta Barbarouses was stretching the defence, regularly finding space down the left in perhaps his best 45 minutes since returning to Wellington.

Unlike earlier weeks, the All White's enterprise led to direct results as he created both goals. The first came on 20 minutes when Krishna was left with a tap in after Jack Duncan denied Barbarouses a brilliant solo strike, before the second arrived on halftime when that same combination adroitly unlocked the opposition defence.

The halftime lead was obviously important but the goals were also a remedy to any simmering frustration as more opportunities were missed. While that often wasn't Wellington's fault - especially when referee Shaun Evans waved away what appeared a good penalty shout from Krishna - it did leave Newcastle in the game longer than Merrick would have liked.

But Glen Moss was never seriously tested in the Phoenix goal. If anything, it was the Phoenix who looked like ending the night with a bang, as Bonevacia and Barbarouses both went close.

Wellington Phoenix 2 (R. Krishna 21, 41)
Newcastle Jets 0
Halftime: 2-0