Solo boys defeat Vanuatu U-18

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BY ROMULUS HUTA

In Port Vila, Vanuatu

THE Solomon Islands men’s hockey team defeated the Vanuatu Under-18 side by a goal to nil in yesterday morning’s encounter of the World Hockey Series Round One championship currently underway in Port Vila, Vanuatu.

A goal by Leslie Satu earned the win for the national representatives.

The Vanuatu Under-18 both boys and girls are participating in this regional event as part of their preparation for the Youth Olympic Games in Argentina come October.

According to the official tournament fixtures, Solomon Islands had a bye yesterday. Their next match is against Fiji today.

With an opening 6-1 win against Tonga and followed by an 8-3 loss against the Vanuatu senior side yesterday evening, Solomon Islands trails in third place on the ladder behind Fiji and Vanuatu, respectively.

Ralph Masae tussles for the ball against the Vanuatu player.

Solomon Islands coach Winki Yee said the narrow win snatched against the Vanuatu under-18 side will reinstate a good team spirit for the boys as they regroup for a crucial encounter against the competition’s best team today.

“The boys put in a good fight. We have many chances but they could only afford one goal. A win is a win and I’m very happy.”

Speaking ahead of the encounter against Fiji, Yee said they are ready and will throw in everything against the mighty Fijians.

“We played only match today (yesterday) and we are having 24 hours of rest before our next match.

“No injuries in camp at the moment and this is good news for us,” Yee added.

Junior Suimae keeps his opponent in check as he sets up defence.

The round robin matches of the competition will be completed by today and teams will enter into the final play-offs tomorrow.

The fixtures for the play-offs will be determined by the official standing after all round robin matches are completed and that is, the first placed will play the second, while the third will get a go against the fourth.

The competition concludes tomorrow evening with the presentation at the Wan Smolbag Stadium.

From left – Solomon Islands hockey manager and coach Winki Yee, Samson Auga, Jack Donga and Patteson Akipu.
Masae reaches for the ball in yesterday’s match against Vanuatu.
Paul Luiramo controls the ball against Vanuatu.
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