Fiji Sports

Blues outsmart Ba under floodlights

Written By : CHRISTOPHER CHAND . Defender Semesa Nakosia scored a crucial goal from close range to inch Shop N Save Lautoka closer to the Fiji Bitter FACT semi finals
30 May 2008 12:00

Written By : CHRISTOPHER CHAND . Defender Semesa Nakosia scored a crucial goal from close range to inch Shop N Save Lautoka closer to the Fiji Bitter FACT semi finals after the Blues handed defending champions Ba a 1-0 loss last night.
Lautoka who were shocked by lowly rated Nadroga 1-1 earlier in the day picked themselves up to bag the important win as they set sail for the elimination stages needing only a draw against Rewa today.
Pool A which was dubbed the pool of death is now wide open with three teams chasing a berth in the semis and Lautoka maintaining its unbeaten mark against soccer giants Ba.
Rewa needs a win against Lautoka today after a dramatic 2-0 win over Power Electric Suva and Vodafone Ba will have to beat both Nadroga and Suva to keep their hopes alive.
Lautoka soccer coach Dennis Singh said the result had lifted the side’s chances of winning the tournament.
“I had this positive feeling since the very first day, no matter what happens we have to go to the semis and we had to lift our performance and had to shut Ba in all departments I know Ba’s strength is on the flanks and we had to shut them out,” Singh said.
“We had to win at all costs or bow out of the tournament.”
Goal scoring hero Semesa Nakosia who is the younger brother of Ba midfielder Keni Doidoi headed home the winning goal when he connected with Alvin Avinesh’s free kick in the fourth minute of the second half.
Ba soccer coach Yogendra Dutt said the side is still in the race and will see that they beat Nadroga and Suva to book their place in the semi finals.
“We are on track because we have two games to go. If we had only one game left then we would have been in trouble but we have two,” Dutt said.
“I won’t say it’s a setback although we lost I’m happy with the performance compared to the opening day. This shows we are moving ahead and our performance was splendid even though Lautoka scored from a set piece.”

Lautoka now leads Pool A with seven points and the Delta Tigers are second on six points while Ba is in third spot with three points but they have two games on hand.
Labasa has become the first team to qualify from Pool B with Navua and Nadi set to battle it out for the second ticket today.
Hosts Nadi will face Navua in the decider at 6.15 pm while Lautoka challenges Rewa at 3.45pm.


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