• Napier City Rovers suffer first loss

Napier City Rovers suffer first loss

Talk about one hell of a wake-up call.

Yes, Thirsty Whale Napier City Rovers received one today when thrashed 5-0 by Wairarapa United in their third-round Central League football match at Masterton's Memorial Turf. Considering the Rovers had won their previous two encounters 5-1 and 5-4 respectively this result was a little hard to comprehend when head coach and centre back Bill Robertson (pictured above) relayed the news during the team's trip home.

His team, the Chatham Cup holders, trailed 4-0 at halftime.

"Wairarapa were ruthless and we looked off the pace, for the first time this season, in the first half. In the second half, we created some good chances but the damage was done in the first half," Robertson explained.

"We have got a young squad but we have to be better otherwise we will get exposed like we did today."

"It's hard to single any of our players out for good performances today. The positive was we were still creating chances ... but not quite as many as them," Robertson said.

Last summer's Hawke's Bay United first-string keeper Scott Morris made four superb saves for Wairarapa United. Wairarapa United midfielder, Hugo Delhommelle, who also played for the Bay last summer, was outstanding for the hosts and caused problems for the Blues midfield defence.

Robertson and assistant coach Jonathan Gould will have no injury concerns to take into account when preparing their team for next Sunday's fourth-round clash against Petone at Napier's Bluewater Stadium.  

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