Premiers The Gap FC, currently on a 16 game winning streak, will do battle against a Brisbane Roar NTC side on a late season charge for glory in this year’s NPLW title decider at Walton Bridge Reserve on Sunday afternoon.
The Gap FC (1) v BRFC/NTC (3)
Walton Bridge Reserve
Sunday, 9 September, 3:00pm
The Gap FC can cap a truly remarkable season with a win over BRFC/NTC that will see them claim the coveted Premiership-Championship double.
The seemingly-unstoppable Gap will enter the final as firm favourites having not lost to the Roar this season, as well as having home ground advantage at Walton Bridge Reserve.
However, proceedings may not be as straight forward for The Gators as many have predicted.
BRFC may have lost to the Gap on both occasions this season, but they pushed their more fancied opponents all the way on both occasions.
The Roar’s current form is also nothing short of outstanding, no more evident than in their comprehensive 4-1 dismantling of Lions FC last weekend.
The first of the Gap’s two victories against BRFC came in round two as the Gators just scrapping home 3-2 in a thriller at home.
Eventual club leading scorer, Tiarne Petterwood, did damage for the hosts, netting a brace to seal the win.
The last time these two sides have faced off was in a catch-up game on August 21 when the Gap FC prevailed 2-0 thanks to late goals to Greta Bodey and Petterwood.
The victory ended a 13-match winning streak for the Roar.
SEMI FINAL PERFORMANCES:
The Gap have been the team to beat all season and are currently on a 16-game winning streak after comfortably accounting for Souths United 2-0 in last weekend’s preliminary final.
That victory over Souths not only ensured them safe passage into the Grand Final, but also the right to host the showpiece event.
The Roar side booked a place in this weekend’s decider with a 4-1 win over second-placed Lions FC, the young NTC side looking comfortable from the outset at Lions Stadium as goals from Hollie Palmer, Indiah-Paige Riley, captain Anna Margraf and Leah Davidson secured their semi-final victory.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
Club captain Ruth Blackburn, who has scored an impressive 20 goals from midfield this campaign, will be a key cog for Rob Askew’s chargers on the weekend.
The Gators’ ever-reliable shotstopper Noran Abaza may also have a big part to play, especially in a Grand Final, where the unpredictable world of a penalty shootout is a real possibility.
David Da Silva’s young Roar side will be relying on technique over experience, with no one in their squad over the age of 16.
Sister act Laini and Sharn Freier have been intrinsic to the team’s success this season with 25 goals between them.
If you can’t make it down to Walton Bridge Reserve on Sunday afternoon, the NPLW Grand Final will be livestreamed on www.footballqueensland.com.au/live
Words: Samuel Johnson
Images: Chris Simpson, Alison Langevad, Ian Judd