Gary Fowell Builders Plains Rangers

August 15 v Whakatane Visique

A vocal and good sized crowd braved the wet conditions and enjoyed a thoroughly entertaining local derby at Awakeri on Saturday. Gary Fowell Builders Plains Rangers were at home to neighbours Whakatane Visique, with both teams level pegging in the division one table.
The visitors had the significant breeze behind them in the first half, and kept Rangers under pressure for quite a bit of it. Midway through the half a miscued clearance from a Rangers defender gave his keeper no chance and Whakatane took the lead. Rangers battled away, with livewire James Krause putting in a huge work rate. Luke Overworth got through the Whakatane defence and put his shot narrowly over the bar. The visitors squandered a couple of good chances and at half time the score was still 1 - 0 to Whakatane.
After the break it was Rangers turn to apply pressure and they did. Chris Johnston headed in a corner to even the scores up. Whakatane were still having some useful break outs and one of these turned to gold when a Whakatane striker was quickest to react to a ball squared across goal and scored. For the last twenty minutes Rangers had all sorts of pressure on the Whakatane team. Krause pounced on a weak clearance and blasted the ball home to once again even the scores up. John Noblett had the ball in the back of the Whakatane net, but it was ruled out for off side. The respective sets of spectators were engrossed till the end, with perhaps the 2 - 2 draw a fitting result.
Centre midfielders Jason Pullar (Rangers) and Robert Sonntag (Whakatane) were named players of the day by their coaches. Rangers also had Johnston and Krause in top form. Rangers now have a two week lay off as the league has days allocated for catch ups. Their next game is at home to Taupo on September 5th.