CAPTION: The victorious Kappa Fiji U – 20 squad. PHOTO: MARGARET NAQIRI
BY VIJNESH CHAND
The U-20 OFC started on a high with Vanuatu keeping the upper hand from the first whistle.Dalong Damalip scored the opener for Vanuatu.He fired a volley from close range.Vanuatu again capitalized on the defensive blender with Zica Manuhi adding his name in the scoresheet.
Coach Ravinesh Kumar made a tactical change when he replaced Tomasi Tuicakau with Rusiate Matarerega.The duo from Nadi Rusiate and Napolioni started to create opportunites for the Fijians,and led to Narendra Rao scoring from 20 metres wide.Rusiate Matarerega nodded a timely cross past Seloni Iaruel to give Fiji the lead by 3-2.
“The Nadi duo proved to be the leathal weapon for the Kappa U-20 side. “Said Ravinesh Kumar coach of Kappa U-20.
Meanwhile in the other encounter of the day the defending champions thrashed Papua New Guinea 5-0.Junior All Whites displayed brilliant football skills.
New Zealand will face Vanuatu next while Fiji takes on New Caledonia on Saturday 23 March at 4pm on Churchil Park.
Fij:Tevita Koroi,Naidu,Jale Dreola©,Kolonio Sivoki,Vineel Naidu,Narendra Rao,Jope Masibalavu,Ratu Nakalevu,Napolioni qasevakatini,Sakaraia Naisau,Tomasi Tuicakau.
Vanuatu:Seloni Iaruel,Raoul Coulon,Jaycen Botleng,Kevin Shem,Jais Malsarani,Barry Mansale,Jackson Tasso,jean Kaltac,Bill Nicholls,Ratu Hungai,Dalong Damalp,zica Manuhi.