Plains Rangers AFC
17 August 2019
Plains Rangers men 1, Kawerau Sports 0.
Plains Rangers hosted Kawerau Sports in their final game of the season in BOP division one. Both teams had had a win over the other earlier in the year, so a willing contest was assured. Rangers were missing their two regular starting centre midfielders, so their line-up was somewhat rearranged.
The game started out fairly evenly, with the midfield battle being well contested. Gradually Rangers began to get the better share of chances. After twenty minutes Christian Wetting had a strike well saved. The home team poured on the pressure near the end of the half. Wetting fed Andy Willis who hit the post. A minute later Jason Pullar had a header saved, then from the resulting corner he put a strong header just wide. In the last minute of the half Wetting powered in a shot that hit the underside of the bar, bounced down but it hadn't crossed the line. At half time the score was locked at 0 – 0.
After the break Rangers resumed their efforts. A good Sam Christieson run ended with Ben Burr putting a shot just wide. Ten minutes into the half a Kawerau player vented his frustrations at the referee and ended up getting sent off. Shortly thereafter Rangers finally made one of their chances pay. Defender Shane Baillie sent in a long shot and the Kawerau keeper couldn't keep it out. This was some relief to the home team after their good number of chances. Kawerau tried their best to score the equaliser, but Rangers kept their heads and played possession football to grab a 1 – 0 win.
It had been an entertaining game to finish the season, with Rangers pleased to gain the upper hand over their neighbours. Centre back Carl Imlig was named player of the day after a strong showing. Others to impress were stand-in keeper Sione Lotu, young substitute Kaleb Muggeridge and captain James Hart who led by example.