AFTER rain caused two washouts last weekend, all twelve Grade 20s sides will hope to be back in action in round 19, with one match on to be played on Saturday afternoon, and five on Sunday.
This week’s match of the round has Parramatta FC hosting Bonnyrigg White Eagles, with the visitors in relatively remarkable form after their securing their second win in a row last weekend, having previously only won once in sixteen matches.
Match of the Round
Parramatta FC v Bonnyrigg White Eagles FC, Sunday 3pm at Melita Stadium
After only having won once in the first sixteen rounds of the season, Bonnyrigg have strung together two successive victories over the past fortnight and will look to take that form with them when they travel to Melita Stadium on Sunday afternoon to take on Parramatta FC.
Bonnyrigg’s latest win came at home to South Coast Wolves, who were defeated 2-1. Parramatta come into this match in seventh place after their round 18 fixture against Blacktown Spartans was washed out last Saturday, while Bonnyrigg remain bottom of the table – level on points with Rockdale City Suns – despite their recent successes.
Sutherland Sharks FC v Manly United FC, 5.30pm at Seymour Shaw
Both Sutherland Sharks and Manly United will be desperate for a win when they meet at Seymour Shaw on Saturday afternoon. The home side sit in third, with a game in hand on Blacktown City and Marconi above them, and will need three points here to stay in the race for top spot.
Meanwhile, Manly United travel south knowing that only a win will keep them in the hunt for a place in the finals after their 4-1 loss to Blacktown City last weekend – with only four rounds of the regular season remaining, the visitors trail fifth-placed Sydney United 58 by seven points.
Blacktown City FC v Marconi Stallions FC, 1pm at Lilys Football Centre
First-placed Blacktown City FC host second-placed Marconi Stallions on Sunday afternoon in a top-of-the-table clash that could go a long way towards deciding the race for the premiership.
Marconi sit three points behind their opponents after an unexpected home loss to Sydney Olympic last Saturday, while Blacktown City are riding high after their comprehensive defeat of Manly United on Sunday; two goals from Sam Perre and one each from the prolific Jonathan Grozdanovski and Juan Zapata helping the competition’s top side to a 4-1 away win.
These sides last met in round 8 at Valentine Sports Park, where Marconi pulled off a 2-1 win with goals from Zac Sfiligoi and Nikita Andricopoulos.
Sydney United 58 FC v Rockdale City Suns FC, 1pm at Sydney United Sports Centre
Sydney United 58 will hope to shore up their position in fifth place with a win over Rockdale City Suns at the Sydney United Sports Centre on Sunday afternoon, building on the six points they have earned from their previous two matches.
Their last victory came 5-3 at Lambert Park, where they beat APIA Leichhardt with braces from Lachlan Roberts and Anthony Vrlic.
United’s opponents on Sunday, Rockdale City Suns, will arrive at the Sydney United Sports Centre well rested after their round 18 clash with Sutherland Sharks was washed out last weekend.
South Coast Wolves FC v APIA Leichhardt Tigers FC, 1pm at Win Stadium
South Coast Wolves and APIA Leichhardt Tigers have little but pride to play for as the regular season enters its final four rounds – neither side can realistically make the finals, sitting in eighth and ninth place on the ladder respectively ahead of their match at Win Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
APIA head south after a disappointing 5-3 loss at home to Sydney United 58 in round 18, while the Wolves suffered their eighth loss in nine games at the hands of last-placed Bonnyrigg White Eagles last weekend. The Wolves won this fixture 2-1 when these sides last met in round 8 at Lambert Park, with goals from Danny Lazarevski and Jake Ravnjak.
Sydney Olympic FC v Blacktown Spartans FC, 2.15pm at Lambert Park
Sydney Olympic should be confident of continuing their incredible run of form – five wins and 24 goals in their last five matches – when they host Blacktown Spartans at Lambert Park on Sunday afternoon; the Spartans coming into round 19 in tenth place on the ladder.
Olympic’s last victory was a remarkable 3-0 win away at competition heavyweights Marconi Stallions on Saturday afternoon, following on from their 10-3 demolition of Manly United a week before, while the Spartans’ round 18 match against Parramatta FC was washed out. Sydney Olympic won 3-0 with a James Andrew hat-trick when these two sides last met in round 8.
– By Max Grieve, PS4 National Premier Leagues Grade 20s Reporter