Three-way title race is wide open

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Reuben CarderThe West Australian
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Chapman’s Chris Scott and Rovers’ Francis Noguera battle for the ball.
Camera IconChapman’s Chris Scott and Rovers’ Francis Noguera battle for the ball. Credit: Arctic Moon Photography/Arctic Moon Photography

Olympic sit top of the table in the Geraldton men’s league after a narrow 2-1 win against Abrolhos on Saturday, with Rovers and Chapman Valley hot on their heels.

Blues coach Frank DeLuca warned that with the side just two points clear of their challengers in first place, the season was far from over. All three top sides have two games left to play.

“It was a hard game,” DeLuca said. “The boys fought it out to the end. We’ve dropped points (this season) where we shouldn’t have done. Rovers have dropped points and Chapman have dropped points.

“Next game ahead is Rovers, so we need to get a result there as well. It could go either way yet.”

The score was level with just over 10 minutes to play in a tense game, with Olympic down to 10 men following a red card for Daniel Lennard, but they managed to take the lead through Agus Hashim and hold on to edge the Vikings. Matt Greenlees made his first league start of the season for the Vikings, while Stuart Bain was absent for Olympic.

In Saturday’s other league game, Rovers had a 2-0 win over a Chapman Athletic side featuring Chris Scott, who had played an Australian Rules league game for Rovers in the Great Northern Football League earlier in the day, but without top scorer Alessio Sala-Martinez. Rovers coach Rhys Jones said the stage was set for a showdown against Olympic in the next round.

“That will probably dictate who wins the premiership,” he said. “It’s a three-way and pretty much anyone’s (of the top three) to win.”

Milaan Kousari and top scorer Bishal G. C. got the goals.

Rovers cemented second place in the reserves, with a 3-0 win against Chapman Yellow consigning their opponents on the day to a three-way race for third against Abrolhos FC and Chapman Black.

Olympic, who secured the title two rounds ago, won 7-2 against Abrolhos, with Brett Northcote scoring four goals.

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