Hamilton Wanderers premier women's team have jumped to the top end of the league table after a 3-1 win against Papakura FC on Sunday.

For the past two seasons, the Wanderers side has struggled to pick up results finishing second to last on both occasions. However, this season that has changed.

The style of football has moved to a free flowing passing and attacking approach. It has been something that the team has been aspiring to play for the past two years.

New arrivals Kelli Brown and Helen Talbot from rivals Claudelands FC, and the continued sparkling form of Grace Wisnewski has put Wanderers into an unfamiliar position of title contenders.


Coach Stephen Cox told Hamilton News at the start of the season the goal was to survive, that goal will still stand, but a new goal of challenging for the title should also be starting to creep its way in.

Against Papakura FC the team showed its attacking muscles, putting three goals past their opponent.

Wisnewski, one of the youngest players on the pitch, put Wanderers up in the 20th minute. The ball was crossed in from the wing and Wisnewski was able to redirect the ball with her head past Papakura keeper Brooke Wylie.

The Hamilton side still has lapses in concentration and fell asleep for a crucial moment in defence, as a Papakura long ball split the Wanderers defence in half allowing Britney Cunningham-Lee, a former Wanderers player, to level the game.

Wanderers were forced into a change, bringing on Kelli Brown in place of Chelsea Elliot. It was the substitute who had changed the game in minutes of coming on.

The pace of Brown was too much for the Papakura defence to handle and allowed her to spring onto a pass and fire the ball home from just outside the box, giving Wanderers a 2-1 lead at the break.

In the second half both teams had efforts on goal with Brown hitting the post again early on. A third goal for Wanderers was needed to ease the nerves, and it came just before the final whistle, as a free kick floated in to the Papakura box somehow found its way into the back of the net.

Wanderers now have two massive games this week which will help give early indications of their title credentials against Forrest Hill Millford United on Anzac Day before a trip to high scoring Glenfield Rovers on Sunday.


Weekend football results

April 21 (Mens)
East Coast Bays 2-3 Hamilton Wanderers
Melville United 1-0 Hibiscus Coast
Ngongotaha AFC 1-2 Claudelands FC

April 22 (Womens)
Papakura FC 1-3 Hamilton Wanderers
Eastern Suburbs 4-1 Claudelands Rovers