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Nadi wins league opener

Maciu Malo
Sunday, February 02, 2014

NADI started its 2014 National League competition on a high beating neighbour Nadroga 2-0 at Prince Charles Park yesterday.

The green machine started with a bang from the first whistle as they launched wave of attacks pressuring their opposition defensive line.

The combination of strikers Napolioni Qasevakatini and Rusiate Batirerega lit up the Jetsetters attacking force but their finishing let them down.

It took the host 38 minutes to register their first goal when Amani Makoi launched a powerful 40-metre strike from in front of the goalmouth beating Nadroga goalkeeper Sakeo Taganeca to the net.

The goal inspired the Jetsetters to play to their best before Qasevakatini completed a wonderful Nadi move with a spectacular goal in the 41 minutes of the first spell.

Former national defender Peni Finau pulled out a few tricks from his sleeves but was not enough to break Nadi's defensive line.

Even the support from his brother Leone Vurukania failed to make an impact on the scoreboard as Nadi led 2-0 at the break.

Nadroga came back strongly in the second spell matching Nadi in all aspects of the game but the experience and class of Nadi skipper and goalkeeper Beniamino Mateinaqara saved the Jetsetters from conceding a goal.

Indiscipline also affected Nadroga's performance after they were reduced to one man short after Shivneel Sharma was red carded in the last stages of the game.

Nadi coach Kamal Swammy said he was happy with the performance of his young team.

"The boys continued with the momentum they left off in the CVC and I am impressed with their performance," he said.

"We fielded two new boys in the game and I am glad they have adapted well.

"The win has given us the confidence to do well in our next game against Rewa next weekend."

Gracious in defeat Nadroga mentor Joseph Nand said his troops played to their best but it was not enough to match the class of Nadi.

"No excuse we lost to a better side," he said.

"The loss will make us work hard in our game against Ba next week."

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