Waves semi hopes on knife edge
A THREE point deduction to Across The Waves has seen them slip to fifth spot on the Archem Premier League ladder and promised an enthralling final round of football this Saturday afternoon.
Waves played an unregistered player against Brothers Aston Villa on the weekend and were stripped of the single point they earned from the 2-2 result at a board meeting on Monday night.
Football Bundaberg chairman Greg Bath said Waves had made an honest mistake, but insisted it was a clear technical breach and action had to be taken.
The Mecano Cup champions are now three points behind Bingera and Brothers Aston Villa, and will need to beat North Bundaberg and rely on both clubs losing to have a chance of progressing to the semi-finals.
If this does occur, goal difference will decide the final positions and they are so tight that even the Football Bundaberg mathematicians aren't game to make predictions.
Providing Moore Park beat Brothers in the 3pm game, a win to Waves over North Bundaberg at 5pm would set up the ultimate finale to the regular season.
Diggers will be striving for an unbeaten season, while NewsMail Cup and defending Archem Premier League champs Bingera will be fighting to secure a finals berth.
“It could pan out perfectly for football fans and there is no doubt it would be an amazing game with both teams playing for so much,” North Bundaberg coach Jim Cairney said.
Brothers captain-coach Peter Bock was determined to push for a win against Moore Park this weekend, despite the fact a draw would see them home.
“We'd love a win really,” the Villa talisman said.
The central midfielder grimaced when asked if he would play again this weekend, before nodding his head slowly.
“I'm bloody sore, but I'll be out there again, I'd say,” Bock said.
“We're in the same boat as a lot of teams (with injuries), so we've just got to tough it out and try and get home (into the finals).”
Across the Waves have played seven games in the last three weeks, and it showed on Tuesday night when they were over-run by an equally fatigued Moore Park.
A breakthrough goal at the top level to Moore Park man of the match James Walker equalled the score after Waves led 1-0 at half-time.
Brendan Banks scored soon after to give the competition newcomers a lead they clung on to.
“It felt like a typical finals game and both teams were really hurting,” Moore Park coach Bruce Leslight said.
“They came out all fired up, but mentally we were switched on too. I think ever since our loss to Alloway we've picked up our game.”
He said he didn't care who made it into the final four and was more worried about the health of his team.
“We've got five blokes in doubt at the moment. It's been a combination of lots of play and the condition of the field, I'd say.”