O-League hots up

New Zealand’s Waitakere United have scored a 4-1 comeback win at home against New Caledonia’s AS Magenta 4-1 to stay in touch with group leaders Auckland City as Matchday 4 of the OFC O-League came to a close on the weekend.

The visitors scored early via Ludovic Boit but Waitakere recovered to lead by half-time with a rocket free-kick by Martin Bullock in the 39th minute and then a strike from Solomon Islands’ international Benjamin Totori. Ryan de Vries and Brent Fisher made sure of the victory in the second half scoring in quick succession as Waitakere moved to within two points of their Auckland rivals. Fisher’s goal took his O-League goal tally to four, just one behind Golden Boot leader Daniel Koprivcic from Auckland City.

Auckland City defeated Manu Ura 2-0 last weekend in Tahiti to leave both Islander teams out of contention for a semi-final berth with two rounds remaining.

Meanwhile, Group B has been thrown wide open with Papua New Guinea’s Hekari United stunning Vanuatu’s Tafea FC 4-0 in front of 3,000 supporters at the PMRL stadium in Port Moresby last weekend. Solomon Islands import Alick Maemae scored a brace while Tuimasi Manuca and Joachim Waroi also chipped in for a comprehensive victory.

Hekari are now second on the table, just two points behind Lautoka who beat Marist 3-0 in Fiji to claim top spot. Debutant Alvin Avinesh starred by having a hand in each of the three goals. The first came through a well directed corner kick for prolific Fiji striker Osea Vakatalesau to head home in the early stages. Vakatalesau then returned the favour setting up Avinesh just after half-time for Lautoka’s second, before the midfielder sent in another perfect corner for inspirational captain Jone Vono Junor to thunder home.