CPL round 9 review

Anyone who has ever played football knows a week is often a very long time.

Macleay Valley Rangers can vouch for that after they surprised undefeated Coastal Premier League competition leaders Boambee 2-1 at Ayrshire Park on Sunday.

The visitors’ Jack Saveall and Chris Walker found the back of the net within minutes of each other in the second half as Rangers overcame a 1-0 halftime deficit.

“It wasn’t a perfect game by any means; it was a scrap and we were up for the scrap,” Rangers coach Simon Tamblyn said.

“We hung in there which we haven’t been doing.”

The result saw Rangers keep in touch with the top four after eight matches and proved to their coach what he knew they were capable of all along.

Now they need to do it regularly.

“Consistency is where we’re going to be counted on now,” Tamblyn said.

“We’re still hanging around fourth spot and that’s where we need to be in the middle of the season to have any chance to go into finals.

“There’s confidence in the fact we can do it, so we just need to realise we’re inconsistent and that’s where we need to make amends.”

The irony of the defeat wasn’t lost on Boambee coach Adrian Pickup after he had witnessed his side register results in previous weeks despite not playing their best.

It was arguably one of the Bombers’ better performances of 2021.

“If anything our effort for 90 minutes was good but we had chances and didn’t take them,” he said.

“That’s football. We just couldn’t put that bloody thing in the back of the net.”

The competition leaders defended stoutly for the majority of the match, but it was the Rangers’ opportunism that proved the difference.

“We gave away two fouls and they scored two goals,” Pickup said.

“We had enough chances to bury them early on but we didn’t do it. It was a bit of good luck for them and bad luck for us with balls bobbling around.

“That’s football, isn’t it?”

In other matches, Kempsey Saints continued their surge up the ladder when they moved into fourth spot following a 5-2 hammering of Port Saints.

Coffs City United rode their luck in a 1-0 victory over Coffs Coast while Northern Storm was too good for Sawtell cruising to a 5-1 win.

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