Welcome to the final event of the 2017 season, the Ellerslie AFC Senior Prizegiving! I’m happy to see so many faces here tonight to celebrate some awesome off field achievements and hear all the great football stories from this season. I will try and keep my season wrap brief so we can get onto giving out some awards having some fun, however there are a few things I do want to touch on! Firstly let me thank all the team managers from all the senior teams – without your hard work being a conduit between the club and your team then all these great things we have achieved this season would not be possible – for anyone reading this who aspires to make a difference to their football experience, I highly recommend being a team manager and helping your team enjoy their season to the fullest! Away from the field I have to thank all the people who helped me out this season, Alannah, Vandhanna, Kerry, Annalise and Ben + all the other people who filled in at times in the Bar. Lynette, Ryan, and Julie – thanks for your help this season with operational things at the club, you have all helped me with both little and large things at times this season! All the coaches who I worked with this season, Nicola, Ben, Lane, Chris, Nick, Marshy, Jason, Fred and Terry – thanks for your assistance and your help. The Senior Committee – I think we all had an understanding this season while the committee was light on numbers – we just knew we had to get on with what we had to do and I appreciate not having to jump through any additional hoops – This area of the club will be changing soon but I want thank everyone who is on or has been on the Senior Committee recently for their help in shaping the seniors into what they look like today.
Last but not least – thanks to the McCarthys for their support – without Rob and Rose I would not be able to get through as much work as I do and they are both provide excellent support.
So that’s all the thank you formalities done and dusted – so what has this season looked like?
If we cast our minds back, this season has been a dream compared to last season when we had to deal with closure of the clubrooms for renovations, the lack of availability of the lower fields for anything, the drama of Ngahue with OFC, along with a million other things that went wrong in the 2016 season.
2017 of course provided challenges, with the main one being the shambles of the lights for the lower field being delayed, and delayed and delayed…. Only to be installed and ready to use once the season had all but finished (*facepalm). AFF’s drop into absolute chaos with competitions – I just have no words for how badly they delivered this season. Actually I do have words to describe this but perhaps better I don’t.
WeeGate which saw neighbours send us photographs of Ellerslie members relieving themselves on bushes – not something that we had anticipated dealing with when the lower fields re-opened – infact that’s probably a theme to be recognised in the role I have accepted, I find myself constantly challenged by new and sometimes interesting problems that in some cases I could never anticipate having to deal with. On the field it was a bit of a Snakes and Ladders season as I dealt with the emotions as both Club Chairman and NRFL Team manager as I watched some teams really hit their straps and others struggle – it’s no secret that it’s harder to do the tasks you don’t like when things are not going your way – but I’m happy to have had people around me (some of which are mentioned above) that can help out when frustration is high and motivation is low. Highlights for me this season have to start with the league winners, all 4 of them! Epic efforts winning your leagues – even if you were favourites to perform at a consistent level over the course of the season is something to be proud of – saviour the moment!
I would like to give special mention to the Women’s First Team who achieved a league high finish this season in the Conference – only finishing 2nd to league winners Papakura who recently won the NRFL playoff and will play in the Premier League next season – something for the players and coaching staff to aspire to in the 2018 season. Champs, lead by Glen Jones have done an amazing job in the AFF Leagues as they put aside their 2nd place finish in last years league to demolish all other teams in this years Championship, and then to top it all off last weekend they defended their Northern Knockout Cup title against Uni-Mt. They have one more game to go in the Tom McNabb cup (champions of AFF vs champions of Counties). They face Beachlands Maraeitai at William Green Domain on the 27 th of September at 7pm! I’m looking forward to a little break after Labour Weekend before we start the ball rolling for the 2018 season, it’s been a pleasure to work with all of you this season – I hope to see you all back next season in the Red and Black colours of this club that I love!
Just a few things to remember to make the night flow
No alcohol to be taken outside
Only miniature trophies can be taken home club trophies are to be left in the clubrooms at the end of the night.
Please try and respect other teams awards and keep quiet during the presentations
Enjoy yourselves but drink responsibly - the bar staff won’t be serving intoxicated people.
Front Cover Chairman’s Welcome Housekeeping Contents Page Tonight’s Menu Glossary Red Comets Fury Elks Deceptively Slow Diamonds Coffee Club Rebels Mustangs Shotaholics Boylan Men’s First Team Women’s Reserves Men’s Champs Men’s Reserves Women’s First Team The End
Page 1 Page 2 to 4 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 & 7 Page 8 & 9 Page 10 & 11 Page 12 & 13 Page 14 &15 Page 16 & 17 Page 18 & 19 Page 20 & 21 Page 22 & 23 Page 24 & 25 Page 26 & 27 Page 28 & 29 Page 30 & 31 Page 32 & 33 Page 34 & 35 Page 36 & 37 Page 38 & 39 Page 40
ENTRÉE: Welcome and Housekeeping Acknowledgement of Life Members and Remembrance Kiwi’s vs The Rest - Under 30’s Kiwi’s vs The Rest - Over 30’s MAIN COURSE Over 40’s Mustangs Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Women’s Red Comets Most Improved Player Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Over 40’s Metro Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Jo Crichton Supporters Player of the Year* Women’s Fury Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Women’s Rebels Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Men’s Deceptively Slow Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Men’s KFCFC Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Men’s Champs Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year
Women’s Reserves Most Improved Players Player of the Year Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year
Women’s First Team Players Player of the Year Most Improved Golden Boot Supporters Player of the Year Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Men’s Reserves Players Player of the Year Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Men’s First Team Players Player of the Year Most Improved Golden Boot Supporters Player of the Year Player of the Year Sportsperson of the Year NRFL Squad Colt Cup - Most outstanding Young Player* Jack Hatton Memorial Trophy* * Special Awards DESSERT Club Golden Boot Services to Refereeing Brewster Shield – Best Overall Performance Tim Hutchens Shield - Supporter of the Year Sportsperson of the Year Ritchie Family Cup – Manager of the Year Clubperson of the Year
Here is something to help you understand some of the trophy’s handed out tonight, and how the winners are chosen. Player of the Year - your teams best player, by team vote or chosen by your coach Sportsman of the Year - the player who gave your team the most, on and off the field, typically also someone who plays hard but clean (the Ellerslie AFC way!) Supporters Player of the Year - some of the teams have this award, most of them have been donated by ex members and have the trophy's themselves have ties to great Ellerslie AFC family's—as you can see from the title these are awarded to the supporters favourite player! Most Improved - this is awarded to players who the coach thinks have made the biggest improvements during the year - it doesn’t mean the player wasn’t good to start with but more that their attitude and learning experience this season has been above the rest. Golden Boot - Easy this one, the player who top scored for your team Players Player of the Year - some of the teams have a player of the year and a players player of the year—this is as the title suggests the version that the players pick, it’s not always the same as what the coach picks!
SPECIAL AWARDS: Colt Cup - donated to the club to help recognise ultimate up and coming exceptional talent, usually rewarded to someone in the First Team or Reserves under 21. Jack Hatton Memorial - donated by Matt Hylla in memory of his brother who passed away, this award also recognises exceptional up and coming talent but also takes into consideration a strong off-field personality. Services to Refereeing - a nod to a growing part of the modern club, the referee - the winner of this award shows excellence in the field of refereeing. Club Golden Boot - the top scorer across the entire club in league games—based on goals recorded on your teamcards Team of the Year - this award is judged on league record alone - the team with the most games played and least losses (present at prizegiving) wins the “Team of the Year” Manager of the Year - The Manager who has made a massive positive impact on his team this season, someone who goes above and beyond the call of duty regularly Sportsperson of the Year - probably the most prestigious award for a player/member to win - the best of the best! Clubperson of the Year - The ultimate award at the club this award recognises ultimate contribution across any avenue at the club, could be a player, coach or a volunteer
Red Comets – Womens Div 2/3 2017 Season Team Report Coach: Nga Kairua Team Manager: Sam Hayman It has been a tough Season for the Red Comets this season. A real learning experience. Even though we played some very good football, the physicality, which is the norm in women’s football, was a brand new dimension for the team to adapt and get used to, but football-wise we held our own and even outplayed and dominated a lot of the other Teams.
The Team consisted of about 19 players, of which 11 were playing in the Junior U15/16s last Season, now playing in the Senior Womens Competition and 8 were new to the Team and the Club. This team is the 1st to come through the Clubs inaugural Football Pathway from Juniors to Senior Womens Football. It also our Development Team. Squad: Chrissy Kairua (GK), Tamara Smith (GK), Zoe Conyngham, Yasmin Anderson-Ayres, Jess Hayman, Jenna Subchuk Ashleigh Cheer, Sam Hayman, Jessica Juno, Eva de Jong, Hannah Panchuk, MariamSalie, Stephanie Burch , Thu Thach, Olivia Spelman, Lillian Kuan, Emily King and Co-Captains Suzy Clarke & Emma BarrettGarnier We started working hard on our basic fundamental ball skills – ball control and passing with positional plays thrown in. The players welcomed the skills training with not much emphasis on fitness and stamina, as our main priority was ball control, passing and positional play.
Over the course of the season, this basic skillset got us out of trouble in many tight scenarios and even won us a couple of close games. The players in turn enjoyed the experience this season because they were able to play football with confidence and with enjoyment, the focus and priority however there were still some bad habits that crept in every now and then! There were games where we were so unlucky to lose by 1 and even drew 3 games in the last 5 mins due to a simple mistake that costed us top spot as the race for the Champ was really tight that dropping a point can take you from top to 3th or 4th in a blink!
Co-Captains Suzy Clarke and Emma Barrett-Garnier led the Team very well with confidence and aplomb. They have performed an exceptional job on and off the field with the team as well as our awesome Team Manager extraordinaire Sam Hayman – Thank you so much Ladies – truly appreciated! I have faith in this Team come next Season. They have endured a tough competition mastered some adversity and obstacles and have improved their Skill-sets immensely, and have learned so much, however, they will need a new Coach for next Season as I’ll be taking a break from coaching football for a year after having involved with football as a player, Coach, Referee, Referee Inspector or in admin for the last 42 years … time for a short break! Like this Season I’ll continue to help out my daughters Footy Team in her final year at Kings College next Season before returning to EAFC after that (..so just one team instead of 2 then) The Red Comets are staying together as a Team next Season and may even have the next lot of U16 come through the same Pathway as well to bolster the Team so would love to have a dedicated and passionate Coach to carry on that continuity to guide them through their EAFC Football Development Pathway. The Red Comets are passionate and dedicated to football so if you are interested, let Nicola Demaine or Tim Adams know Have a fantastic Summer, recharge the batteries and have a wonderful festive Season Yours in Football Nga Kairua
Ellerslie Fury Woman's Division 3 2017 was a Rollercoaster ride for our Womens Div 3 side. We started 2017 with a new coach, half a new team and in a grading division for the first half of the season. As a result of this we started of a with a couple of wins and on the other hand some big loses. Once grading was completed and our competition began we were determined to play to the best of our ability. We had a few injuries along the way which meant we were struggling to get a full team each week. We also had a number of people who had to play in unfamiliar positions due to this lack of numbers, especially in the back line, so thanks to those girls who stepped in and still gave it their all. Jorge our coach kept pushing us at training to improve and we ended the season having achieved our goal of being in the top 5. Next year
We hope for an injury free season, bring on 2018!
The 2017 season was the dawn of a new era for the Elks, as we dragged our battered carcasses out of Division 3 and into the Over 35s. Recruitment proved relatively easy given we were the only Over 35 team at Ellerslie, so it wasn't hard for Tim to steer prospective players in our direction. We started slowly (pun intended) and it wasn't until our fourth game together that we started to click, putting 6 past SAR. From then on goals weren't too hard to come by, with only two players in the squad failing to register for the season. We had a couple of great games against the Fencibles side who eventually won the league, with the other notable league games coming against a hard-working Western Springs side who ended up finishing 3rd behind us. The highlight for this season was our extended O35s cup run, eventually getting knocked out 3-2 in the semi-finals by the team who won Division 1. Along the way we had our best result of the season, a hard fought 2-1 quarter-final win on a wet and windy Mangere Mountain against the top team in Division 2. Centre back Giovanni scored a screamer in the 85th minute from about 30 yards out (pretty sure he's behind halfway now when he tells the story) to take the lead and eventually the win.
All up a great start to our Over 35s journey, looking forward to next year with the lads.
Massive thanks to Tim and Nathan for helping out with recruitment at the start of the season, and to Deceptively Slow and Shotaholics for keeping training interesting on those wintery Wednesday nights. Stats: P 15, W 9, D 3, L 3, F 46, A 17, GD 29 Golden Boot: Adrian Gigena Squad: Sam Beresford, Ross Cooper, Craig Cooper, John Davison, Danny Norcross, Cristiano Bellavitis, Giovanni Botti, Adrian Gigena, Dan Henderson, Jon Bagnall, Chris Scrafton, Murray Bruges, Stephen Sangster, Felipe Panteli, Mike Hogg, Gerardo Caballero
Last season was going to be a tough act to follow - winning Div 2, losing Club Golden Boot, David Richmond, and the silky Sven Exeter to the 'Broken Knee Club' and half of our regular back four retiring. In spite of this, the rest of last year's faithful returned, along with club legends, Lane Whittaker & Matt Wall, and the squad bolstered further with some late transfer window wheeling and dealing. #squadoftwenty There were ominous signs from the first round, though, Three Kings turning up in red tops(?), losing our defensive linchpin, Paul Currie, after just 6 minutes (with what mysteriously turned out to be a season ending calf injury), scoring 4 goals but shipping in 5! Ups and downs, injuries, absences and being well & truly deserted by Lady Luck soon became the story of 2017. In short, a season that promised a Mercedes turned out to be a Mazda, much to everyone's frustration. That said, we played some decent football throughout, banged in an average of 3 goals a game, deserved much more and have grown week-on-week as a group, on and off the pitch. #banter #shanter There's no doubt that with a couple of parts, a few modifications and a Warrant of Fitness, we'll be back stronger next season. #rollon2018
"Sometimes exceptional seasons are built on seasons like this". - Vincent Kompany, on Man City's 2016/2017 campaign.
In the numbers ... - 21 League games (W6 D4 L11) - 51 goals scored (only 10 shy of last year's haul) - 57 goals conceded (collective responsibility?) Top scorers: Sam Dallimore (14), Sean Cunneen (12), Scott Jones (10) Squad: Ahren Koreman-Smit, Blair Gilbert, Callum Dunbar, Daniel Hefferan, Eli Elkington, Eric Pollard, Lane Whittaker, Mark Standley, Matt Wall, Paul Buckle, Paul Currie, Ram Mavani, Rob Hayden, Sam Dallimore, Scott Jones, Scott Waldron, Sean Cunneen, Stuart Nimmo, Sven Exeter, Top Khamwanthong. Thanks: Nimmo for being an absolute legend, Tim and team for all the hard yards behind the scenes each week, the grass pitches at Michaels Ave, for Asahi in the clubrooms and, last but not least, Shotaholics and Elks for making training possible towards the end of the season. Cheers Scott Jones
The Diamonds came into 2017 full of confidence: a league winners’ medal hanging around our necks, some fresh faces with immense pedigree, a double promotion to Div 2, a hot new kit, a two-bit Instagram account, and, somehow, a sponsor which ensured our subs were paid in record time. But while we had a better overall record than last season, and were better prepared, our meaningless lives didn’t get to experience that titlewinning joy which briefly fills you with light after six months ignoring our friends and family to play football. It’s still been a lot of fun, though. Sadly, our season was defined by a series of what-could-have-beens. Having initially registered 18 players, the squad eventually swelled to 23 midway through, as a series of season-ending injuries began to strike key squad members. Not even our former international sporting representative could keep fit for more than four games, and weeks where 14 players were unavailable became commonplace towards the end of the year. That said, we still managed 18 wins in 21 games, and drew with our division rivals once, while only conceding 17 goals. Unfortunately, we won the league last year by banging in nearly 80 goals in 18 games, whereas this year we only managed 63. The ultimate league winners scored closer to 90 this season, and it was simply a pace we could not match. We’re all getting a bit old for this, maybe: particularly for a 22-game season. Sportsperson of the year, Matthew Perkins, admirably filled in for our injury-struck goalkeeper for months on end, which everyone in the club will know automatically qualifies you for such an award. Our player of the year, John Chisholm, was simply huge at centre back, and a big part of why we managed to pull off 11 clean sheets. A big thanks to Tim and the club, however, for handling some sometimes unusual requests from us, and for his patience in dealing with those. Shit he’s organised. We like to do our own thing a bit but Ellerslie AFC provides a huge amount of support and excellent facilities, for which we’re very grateful.
Summer can’t come and go fast enough.
2017’s Senior Prizegiving is proudly brought to you by our friends at The Coffee Club in Ellerslie.
Bruce Gibb who owns the business with his partner is a name Ellerslie members may remember - a long time servant of the club as he came up through the U19’s ranks and played a lot of NRFL Reserves and some First Team games as well. Work meant he had to play a more social level for the last part of his career and he played out west for Oratia, but he came back to Ellerslie to start the next chapter in his life as a small business owner. We hope tonight’s relationship with The Coffee Club is the start of something both parties can build on - so please when your next in Ellerslie Village looking for a coffee or a bite to eat choose The Coffee Club and make sure you mention your from Ellerslie AFC!
The 2017 season was a real rollercoaster for the rebranded Rebels (previously Nomads). I was taking the team for the first time and it was also my coaching debut at senior level. The league itself had picked up a number of new teams and ended up being an exceptionally competitive Championship division. There were three focuses for the season work as a team, play good football and have a bit of fun. We certainly delivered on these in patches, were often able to dominate the ball and were regularly praised by the opposition for our quality of play (stoked?). Unfortunately consistency was our achilles heel and we finished around 8th (AFF made a few mid season changes to the league making it hard to say what the final table really was).
We had some really good results, notably a couple against West Auckland (2-0) and Forrest Hill (5-1) where everything came together. We pushed hard against eventual top two Manukau and Western Springs and also partook in a 6-5 thriller against Norwest which we unfortunately came out on the wrong end of. P16 W6 D3 L7
Thanks to all the girls for taking on the ideas and principles I was working on, turning up in rain, lightning and thunder and playing some really good football this year, it was awesome to coach you.
Team members Goalkeeper: Crystal Myers Defenders: Eva Perrone, Cat Martindale, Kim Oosterbeek, Hannah Mills, Zenica Mann, Emily Maguire (C) Midfield: Sharon Clarke, Hollie Leona, Clarissa Nathaniel, Jill James, Ashley Hardy, Lauren Recny, Ellie Vargas Forwards: Laura Ahern, Annalise Witteveen, Petra Wedlake
Captains word - Emily Maguire
Despite some tough battles and unfortunate results on the scoreboard, this season with the Rebels has been nothing short of fun. Our team
was situated in a middle ground between serious and social and everyone definitely knew how to bring both when the time called for it. We had a great mix of old and new players that meshed together well, we picked each other up when we were down and we high fived, pep talked and hype clapped our way to some wicked football and memories. Seeing players find their groove and grow more confident in their skills was a personal highlight. It was a fantastic season and I couldnâ€™t have asked for a better bunch of ladies to play with.
Next year Looking forward to building on some of the foundations from this year and putting in a more consistent set of performances in 2018. There will be a bit more fitness work but mainly a focus on playing good possession based football and of course a few yarns and some fun at the same time.
Over 40’s Div3 Mustangs - Position in league – doesn’t matter Not one of our better sesaons with few wins and many losses. Two factors that led to this, many injuries in the squad which meant we struggled to have reserves at times and the imbalance in the league with several new teams coming into the league from over 35’s leagues. With our average age of around 52 it’s just too hard to chase down 40 year olds all day. So as expected we suffered a number of thrashings. Despite this, the spirit in the team remained high as it always does from year to year. A welcome to the team this year to our Greek/cockney/Kiwi Alex. He has added a lot of colour to the team to say the least and not to mention his great skills in midfield. He has been a fine replacement for Sam who suffered a long term injury pre-season and was out for the year. We had the good news of Lyubi deciding to stay in NZ but the not so good news of losing Graeme Steel from the team who is taking up a role in Germany for 4 years. Graeme has been a great team man, willing to play anywhere but mostly in goal where he excelled in covering Andy K whenever Andy got the urge to play up front. We wish Graeme all the best and look forward to his return to the team for the ‘twilight’ years.
Lots of laughs throughout the season with many humorous moments on the pitch, most of which were published in a weekly roundup just to rub it in a bit further. Andy K’s after match speeches always a highlight along with the well-earned refreshments. An upside to some of the thrashings we endured was the goals against cost a $1 into the fine tin we run, which goes towards the end of year team trip. $87 each!! paid by each team member. We are off to Nelson, a new destination for the team with a game against Nelson FC over 45’s arranged. Should be another fine trip for the boys. An extremely wet Winter put a wee dent in the Thursday training sessions at times, however a few of us still managed to get the clubrooms on those nights. Well done to our Player of the year and our Sportsman of the year and thanks to our supporters. We will all be back next year, hopefully AFF sorts the league making for a more even competition, but no matter what it’s the game we love and the comradery that goes with it so we’ll back for another season.
Ian P & Bruce
Division 3 this year offered a very competitive challenge for us this year, every weekend's game could go either way and any team could beat any other team. I must commend all of our oppositions, with special mention to Ellerslie Business Time and Ellerslie Fake Madrid - every week every team turned out and gave us a very competitive challenge. Congratulations to Eastern Suburbs Mad 11 who won Division 3 this year which came right down to the points earned in the final week, which underscores how tight the contest was. Thanks to the team for your hard work and commitment, some great memories made. Thanks also to Ellerslie AFC for the great club support and comraderie at training. Especial thanks to our supporters and Michael Clark who despite being ruled out from playing with an ACL injury, turned up to support us to almost every game.
Player of The Year: Ivan Atkins Ivan has put in a solid effort this year, making the effort at training and on the pitch. He is great defensively, but some of the most memorable moments I have from this year of Ivan is of when he went on the attack, in one game charging down the right wing on the edge before swinging in a solid cross for Blake to open our goalscoring for the game.
Sportsperson of The Year: Quintin Russ (Muss) No surprises here, Muss brings a passion to football to games and trainings, and is a great supporter of Ellerslie and especially the bar. Shotaholics did not have a goalkeeper for 2017 so for much of the season Muss hung up his #5 shirt and did his bit for the team between the sticks. He was dedicated to making sure he was ready for this each week, but my most memorable moment for 2017 was when he was playing outfield towards the end of the season vs. the League winners. With Stephen Dowsett between the sticks, and Muss and Moose together in central defense always one step ahead of the opposition strikers, repeatedly nicking the ball off them and sending it back upfield for our counter-attack and making a huge contribution towards our win that day. Thanks and looking forward to summer football! Nathan Russ
Ellerslie Boylans Team Report 2017 This was the Boylans’ third season competing in the AFF Division 1. The team lost a few players through international transfers last season but recruited well in the summer bringing in players hailing from Mexico, England, and Gisborne. The league was of a higher standard than in previous years with more close games and fewer double digit score lines. After some poor early results the team bounced back to traditional form and finished strongly to finish in 4th. The plight of the season was illustrated by our results against Drury Utd. After losing 3-1 in the first half of the season with 12 unfit and injury prone players we came back in the second half with a full squad to beat the same team 9-0. Another highlight of the season was a dramatic 3-3 away draw with a very good South Auckland side. Our ‘MVP’ and ‘Golden Boot’, by some margin, was John Hight. Our ‘Most Improved’ went to Sam Jones who grew in confidence at fullback throughout the season. An honourable mention went to Michael Goulding. Michael was switched from his usual position of centre forward in round 2 to play the rest of the season at CB and was safe as houses. Up the Boylans!
Golden Boot: John Hight MVP: John Hight Most Improved: Sam Jones Final Position: 4th (9 wins, 3 draws, 6 losses) Goals scored: 60
Goals conceded: 34
OVER 40â€™S METRO REPORT
Played :18, Win : 14 Draw: 1, Lost :3, GD: +44, Points: 44 Started the season with 3 wins and then the Master Tournament was on which gave us three weeks off. Coming back we lost to Fencibles and then a draw with Takapuna which dropped us to 4th place on the table. We battled away and clawed our way back to the top, on the way we lost to the Mount.
The season ended with a lot of teams defaulting but when it came to the end we had won the league. We will carry on kicking around on Thursdays till the end of the year. Have a good summer fishing. Stewart Ritchie Team Manager.
The 2017 season was a very disappointing one for the Ellerslie First Team where relegation was only avoided on a dramatic last match day of the campaign. The season got off to a bright start with comprehensive 3-1 and 4-1 victories against Tauranga City And Hibiscus Coast respectively. These wins were followed by a narrow loss to Manukau City and two draws which had the team sitting comfortably in 5th place after as many rounds. The early results did not give any indication of the poor run to follow that would define the season. One win and two draws in the next 13 league matches saw the First Team pick up 5 points out of a possible 39 and drop into a fight to stay in NRFL Division 1. Although there were times when the team played well enough to pick up points, too often lapses in concentration cost them goals at crucial moments. Through this period there were certainly moments that did not help the teams cause, a valid last minute winner against Metro that crossed the opposition goal -line was not given and a couple of late decisions also cost the side valuable points. The Chatham Cup did not offer any consolation from the league form either with a 3-1 loss to Melville Utd cutting short any hopes of a â€˜cup runâ€™ at the first hurdle. With four games remaining Head Coach Chris Wallace decided to step aside and Fred de Jong and Terry Torrens took over the coaching duties. A 2-0 loss against eventual league winners Western Springs and a draw against Mt Albert Ponsonby meant the team sat just above the relegation zone with two games remaining.
Then a 2-1 loss to fellow relegation candidate Franklin after a very lacklustre performance saw Ellerslie sitting 2nd bottom with one match remaining. Heading into the final game against Oratia United the equation to stay up was
simple, win and hope Franklin didnâ€™t. A Callum Waters goal against Oratia was enough to win the match, although the sending off of Conrad Benefield meant the last 15 minutes were very stressful for the decent crowd that had come to watch. News that Franklin had drawn 0-0, having missed a penalty with ten minutes to go, meant that the club could let out a collective sigh of relief at remaining in Division 1. The club wishes to thank everyone involved with the team this season, including players, coaching staff, management and supporters. Special thanks to Chris Wallace and Nick Russo for the effort they put into coaching the team over the past seasons. Also special mention must be made of the tireless efforts of Tim Adams for his organisation and administration of the team. We wish you all an enjoyable summer and we look forward to a more successful campaign next year.
Swamp Dragon Team Report â€“ written by VC Laura Askew and Manager Amelia Lowe
Off the back of a successful maiden season in 2016, the Swamp Dragons were back with almost an entirely new team (and coach) in 2017. There were high goals set in place for the 2017 season, with wanting to win the league and make the cup finals. We established an incomparable culture within the team early on - which aided us in coming away with the trifecta at the end of the season; most goals scored, least goals conceded and a 1st place finish (with no losses). Top Goal Scorers: Tove Bennett (20), Laura Askew (18), Claire Kenyon (11) PLAYED
Having seen success in the reserves grade, the team was determined to show we could take on the next level and that opportunity came in the third round of KO cup vs Onehunga Conference. With a slightly depleted team we took it to them, but ended up going out on sudden death penalties after coming back from a 2-0 deficit to finish 3-3 at the final whistle.
This game epitomised the effort and energy that the whole team had shown all season and we couldn't have asked for a better season!
This team had determination, drive to be the best and most importantly fun throughout the season, which is exactly what they achieved. Massive thank you to our coach Lane Whittaker for taking on the Swamp Dragons and driving the team in a new perspective to give them that attacking drive. Thank you to all the Swamp Dragons for being awesome and making the team what it is. Having that culture is extremely important and it showed this season by watching you play together on the pitch, working together to become WINNERS! So congratulations to the Ellerslie Swamp Dragons for winning the AFF Womenâ€™s Conference Reserve League!!!
It has been an honour and a pleasure to manage a team filled with a group of great players who are willing to fight for each other week in, week out and I’m proud to be part of a team with great mates and great banter every week. It’s makes my job as the manager and coach that much easier to walk in each week knowing that the group are there to have a good time and battle each week for Victory. 2017 has been a stellar year for the Ellerslie Championship team, we have remained undefeated throughout the whole year. In the process we won our league and reclaimed the Northern Knockout Cup. There is one game left for us to maintain the record and it’s the last game that we lost all the way back in 2016 against South Auckland Rangers. Bring on the Tom Mcnab Trophy against Beachlands Maraetai and I know the team will put everything on the line to claim a treble which will be something to treasure for the rest of our lives. Right from preseason the team have fought hard in every game, we played teams in Div 1 and 2 reserves and a couple of conference league teams. This preparation definitely helped us step up in the first week of the season and gave us the confidence to play with freedom and attacking intent. Compared to 2016 we have stepped up a level and put an extra 29 goals in the back of the net whilst keeping our high defensive standards only conceding 15 goals all year. The foundation at the back has only improved with all the players from last year continuing to build as a unit. All in all the record in 2017 compared to 2016 is as follows. It’s great to see improvements across the park and building on what was an awesome 2016.
16 W - 2 D - 0 L
15 W - 3 D - 2 L
It has been great to develop as a team further this year and we have definitely made some big steps up from 2016. The players who have come in have added extra quality and competition to the team and pushed all the existing players to step up. I firmly believe that this has helped us maintain our unbeaten record and remove any potential for complacency. I could name individual highlights and games which show the fight of the team but it has been the work every week put in by the players on Tuesday and Thursday showing up to train at a mixture of grounds including the fabled home turf of Liston Park. I couldnâ€™t be more stoked to have a team who have made this level of commitment and the spoils have been a result of this. A final shoutout must go to the leadership group in the team in particular to my captain Jono for helping to motivate the team and provide advice to me each week. Also to Chris for be the heart behind the team, the main communicator and the man willing to take the warm ups before games and trainings. Without you two the job would be a lot harder, so big Thank you. Itâ€™s been an honour to represent Ellerslie each week with this team and I look forward to bringing more success to the club.
Wow! What a dramatic season! The highs and lows of a great cup run, winning the league on the final game and 3 memorable matches against a defiant Melville. It’s been a delight to be part of a fantastic group. The Melville games epitomise this and how our season panned out. Our first encounter ended in a dogged 1-0. Hard fought and resilient defending meant we went 7 games unbeaten, with the only goal coming from a trademark “LEGO” corner. The next time we met was in the Reserves Knockout Cup and what a corker of a game! A pre-match song of the Vengaboys started proceedings. What followed was a game that had everything – Red card, dubious offside goal, awful field, last minute winner and 3 variants of footballing styles (Jose, Pep and Pulis). There was only one way to celebrate a memorable win, pizza and opera! Third and final game was on home soil (or rubber) and importantly a title decider. Eager to make amends, Melville flew out of the blocks scoring 2 early goals. This didn’t deter us and the gents produced the goal of the game to make an interesting second half. Unfortunately, we couldn’t rally together to and get a result, which meant Melville sat top on goal difference with 5 games to play. Only 5 wins would give us a glimmer of hope and a slip up from Melville. Deflated but not defeated, we reassembled and bounced back to winning ways, beating 3 of the top 5 teams, a bullish Franklin and a hard working Oratia. All this with only conceding 1 goal and scoring 15. On top of this, an old friend from Ellerslie relayed the message that Melville stumbled against Manakau, meaning that the victory against Tia won us the league!! There was only one way to celebrate…………..”We like to party.” A HUGE congratulation to everyone involved on winning NRFL DIV 1 Reserve League. Our application and attitude in training has been top notch and this has reflected on games with our performance. The willingness to learn, adapt style of play, push each other on and welcome anyone and everyone into the team, was a joy to witness.
Season Statistics Comp
Finally, I would like to say a big thank you for your relentless hard work and effort throughout the season. It's a pleasure and an honour to be part of a fantastic group of guys, on and off the field. Some wonderful memories that will be ever present! Thank you to Chris Wallace, Grant Marshall and Nick Russo for having me part of the coaching team again. Also to Fred De Jong, Terry Torrens and Fred Poelman for the latter stages of the season. Big shout out to Matt Hylla and Aaron Collin for patch working everyone back together and to Tim Adams for making every training, game day and functions organised and stress free. Lastly, a massive thank you for the support that my wife offered to me and the team, even at 9 months pregnant.
2017 has seen the First Team finish in the highest position so far in the Conference League, 2nd to Papakura. Which is lucky as any higher and we would have to play in the Premier League next season! Whereas tomorrow we may not be ready for premier football, we are certainly heading that way. With an influx of new players, and some of last years Reserves stepping up to first team, the first part of the season was really about gelling as a team and establishing a common plan. Perhaps a few points dropped in that phase cost us first place, but once the boat had stopped rocking (although a few people fell out), we finished the season with 4 wins from 5, all against the top teams in the league. We were the only team to beat Metro home and away, finally managed to beat Fencibles and staged a massive come back from 3-0 down at halftime to Onehunga Sports, winning 7-4! The players this year ranged from enthusiastic youngster in Steph and Ash to experienced ex New Zealand reps Mel and Ella. Throughout the season the ranks were boosted by a number of Reserves and some very talented 16th grade players who joined us for the Knockout Cup campaign. Debs lead the team well, with senior players Amanda and Sarah stepping up when needed. There is now an established ‘squad’ feeling in the first and reserves teams and a clear pathway for the youth to taste top level football. With new coach Lane on board the future looks bright. Also, with Papakura out of the way…. It has been a pleasure to work with this team this year. I have learnt a lot as coach and a person and look forward to the challenges that lie ahead in 2018. Massive thanks to Fran (manager, Jason (assistant coach) Tim (god), and Ryan (youth coordinator). Also thank you to the following dragons who helped us come second – Sally, Erin M, Eva, Rachel, Gemma, Tove, Ayla, Telisha, Anita,Hannah and baby dragon Akhita.
Top Goal scorers Ella Wiebe 18 Sarah Broadbent 10 Lana Davies 5