City bounce back in thriller

Aiden BoyhamSound Telegraph
Rockingham’s Lydon Hodgkiss and Ashfield’s Jamie Stewart battle for the ball.
Camera IconRockingham’s Lydon Hodgkiss and Ashfield’s Jamie Stewart battle for the ball. Credit: Richard Polden

Rockingham City Football Club got back to winning ways last Saturday, as they defeated Ashfield 3-2 in an entertaining clash at Lark Hill in Port Kennedy.

Having come off the back of a tough 1-0 loss to Forrestfield a week earlier, City were keen to show their intent and did just that early on.

Rob Crerar’s side dominated the first half-hour, taking the lead just after 15 minutes when Oriol Fernandez put home Ryan Kennedy’s cross. City could have been up comfortably at half-time were it not for a combination of missed chances, good saves by Ashfield’s keeper and the woodwork — and they were made to pay for it when Ashfield equalised just before half-time.

With an indirect free kick awarded after the goalkeeper held on to the ball for too long, Ashfield’s Jamie Stewart fired home a deflected shot off the wall to level the score before the main break.

After some stern words at half-time from Crerar, City looked to regain the ascendency in the second half but Ashfield got a foothold in the game and went 2-1 up after Stewart scored again for the visitors. Rockingham changed their formation to chase the game and equalised with around 10 minutes left after Jason Pottier scored from close range after a great cut back from substitute Ravi Kuppusamy.

With just minutes remaining, City got the winner when Lydon Hodgkiss rose highest to head home Blake Sokolowski’s dangerous free kick.

Crerar praised Kennedy and Christian Hogge for their displays during the win and said it was great to get the victory with the bulk of his players now back from holiday breaks.

“We’ve had those players away and had a tough run and there perhaps have been a few people with an agenda hoping that we lost on the weekend, so it was great to get the win ... especially for the loyal fans that are down there every week,” he said.

“It was a pleasing win.”

Rockingham have a bye this weekend before they return to action on September 9 ag-ainst UWA-Nedlands FC at Lark Hill.

In the meantime, City’s younger players will be treated to a special training session run by former Perth Glory coach Ian Ferguson this week.

Rockingham goalscorer Jason Pottier hunts the ball down.
Camera IconRockingham goalscorer Jason Pottier hunts the ball down. Credit: Richard Polden
Rockingham City’s Max Snelson had his afternoon cut short by injury in the first half.
Camera IconRockingham City’s Max Snelson had his afternoon cut short by injury in the first half. Credit: Richard Polden

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