Hamilton Wanderers have moved level with Eastern Suburbs at the top of the Lotto NRFL Premier Women's league after a dominant 6-0 win over rivals Claudelands Rovers.

With Auckland moving to alert level 3 due to a Covid-19 outbreak, the Hamilton derby was the only game to take place in the NRFL on the weekend, with hosts Wanderers limiting crowd numbers and enforcing social distancing requirements.

Despite the changes, the weather played its part in making it an outstanding day for football with not a cloud in the sky as the two teams lined up for the second meeting of the season.

Claudelands, without Samantha Baldwin, who was trapped in the Auckland lockdown, had two debutants in their starting line-up with defender Tara Cairns making her first appearance of the season, while goalkeeper Aimiee Archibald got the nod over both Claudelands' second and third-string keepers in the absence of Rylee Godbold.


Hamilton Wanderers started the game strongly, and were dominant in possession for the opening 10 minutes.

Claudelands also started well, with Cairns and Archibald both slipping into the team with few issues, however Wanderers soon slipped through the gears.

An early corner for Wanderers gave an opportunity for Chelsea Elliot to once again show her physicality and open the scoring with a well-placed header.

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For the next 20 minutes the game played out without a goal, with Claudelands holding well, but with little possession themselves.

A hand ball in the box allowed Emma Cawte to double Wanderers' lead from the penalty spot, before Chelsea Elliot scored again moments later, making it 3-0 at the half time break.

In the second half, a change of formation for Claudelands meant the midfield was more compact for both teams, however Wanderers still found avenues to break through the Claudelands Rovers defence.

An intricate pass from Michaela Foster slipped Kate Loye through on goal, and her shot found the far top corner of the Claudeland's goal.

More defensive woes in the Claudelands box saw Foster get a goal of her own, before Chelsea Elliot rounded off the scoring with a well-earned hat-trick.


The result means, while Eastern Suburbs have a game in hand, Wanderers join them at the top of the table.

Claudelands continue to languish in the relegation zone, with their crunch match against Glenfield Rovers suspended this weekend due to the Covid-19 outbreak.