Who Is Walter Pless?

Walter_Pless

A teacher by profession, but has been a football writer for 33 years. Has written for "Soccer Action" (Melbourne), "Australian Soccer Weekly" (Sydney) and "World Soccer" (London), as well as for several Tasmanian newspapers. Currently contributing to "Goal!Weekly" in Melbourne and the Australian magazine "Soccer International". Played for Croatia-Glenorchy, Caledonians, Metro, Rapid and University in Tasmania, as well as in the United States of America. Coached University, Metro and Croatia-Glenorchy.

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Tilford Zebras Vs Kingsborough Lions Rd 5

 

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Photos: The Caledonian match program from 1979 for the Calies and Tasmanian games against the visiting Newcastle KB United [Courtesy of the Rodney Tattam Collection]

Forgive me for saying I’ve seen it all before.

But, it’s true.

Others who have had a long involvement in Tasmanian football are probably saying the same thing.

After the recent matches involving local clubs against South Melbourne and Melbourne Knights, there has been some discussion about the sort of teams that should have been selected to play these Victorian Premier League sides.

The representative team that played against Melbourne Knights on the Sunday, for example, came up for some criticism in regard to team selection and playing style.

Some said a Tasmanian side should have been selected, as was the case for the game against Central Coast Mariners in July last year.

Well, such visits by interstate sides are not new.

Shown above are pages from a program produced by the Caledonian club in February 1979.

Calies, as they were commonly known, absorbed Hobart Rangers a decade earlier, before themselves merging with Kingborough to form Kingborough Lions United.

Ken Morton was Calies coach at the time, so he is also probably saying he’s seen it all before.

Morton has retained the fire and the drive to still be organising such matches today - as coach of South Hobart.

Morton didn’t stay with Calies for long. In fact he didn’t see the season out and took over the player-coach role at Rapid shortly after arriving in Tasmania from Western Australia.

Calies played Newcastle KB United on the Saturday and a State squad - actually a southern Tasmanian selection - played Newcastle KB United again on the Sunday.

Two games in two days. No problem in those days.

The Calies side and the State squad listed are interesting.

Which players are still involved in some capacity nowadays?

Chris Hey is one who has seen it all, so all those who criticise Chris, even on this blog, should think again. Just like Morton, Hey has seen it all and has been involved as a player and a coach and I reckon he knows what he’s talking about and is trying to improve the local game.

Alister Hales still has some involvement with Beachside, while Paul Jones was refereeing not so long ago.

Eamonn Kelly was, until relatively recently, coaching Glenorchy Knights and the Tasmanian side.

David Smith is, of course, the Northern NSW coaching director, while Rodney Tattam coaches women’s football these days.

Neil Thomas played with Kingston Cannons until recently, while Willie Peters catches the occasional local game.

So, there you have it. Nothing new under the sun, but I wish we’d learn something from the past. We’d be better prepared for today - and tomorrow.





Photos (Top to Bottom): Marcello Marchioli scored a penalty against Beachside; Peter Frank netted for Knights against Ulverstone; Matthew Nowicki was on target for the Knights against Ulverstone; The Knights' Andrew Robb scored against the North-West Coast outfit [PlessPix]

Kingborough Lions United drew 3-3 with Beachside in a pre-season friendly on an excellent pitch at Lightwood Park on the weekend.

Ryan Bevan gave the Lions the lead after 10 minutes, but Liam Brown made the most of a long ball out of defence to beat David Leamey and equalise.

Kingborough led 2-1 at the break after Marcello Marchioli scored from a penalty.

David Cooper had three chances in the second half to put Kingborough further ahead, but he converted only one.

He fired over the bar with the first, hit the post with the second, and converted the third with a clever back-heeler to make it 3-1 for the home side.

Two goals in the last five minutes by Beachside made it 3-3.

Newcomers Sam Crosswell, Ricki Eaves and Tom Gordon played for Beachside, while Kingborough’s new faces were David Cooper and Andy Taylor.

In the reserves curtain-raiser, Beachside beat Kingborough Lions United 3-1, Benn Watkins netting for Kingborough.

Liam Brown scored one of the Beachside goals.

*****

Glenorchy Knights beat Ulverstone 3-1 in a pre-season friendly on the weekend.

Ulverstone coach, Nick Owen, was satisfied with the exercise and considered it a valuable pre-season hit-out.

“It was good for us to have our first hit-out for the season and there are some good signs from the match to say that we will push into the top-4 this season,” Owen said.

“In the first half, our we played the ball well through the midfield and probably should have been one or two up early, however, the knights keeper made some good saves and our finishing needs a bit more fine-tuning.

“A mix-up between Will Cox-Haines in goals and Kyle Baldock at the back cost us the first goal, but we still stuck to our game plan and were rewarded by a well-taken goal by Dallas Baldock from a Brayden Mann through-ball.

“The game deteriorated midway through the second half due to some tired legs, which gave both teams opportunities to win.

“We thought we went ahead from a Brayden Mann header, but the goal was disallowed for offside.

“The Knights went on to score another two opportunistic goals in the last 10 minutes to take the victory, one of which was due to another keeping error.

“It was positive for me to see some composed play in the middle of the park by Adrian Foote, who was in and out of the seniors last year, but who has worked hard in the off-season to get himself fit and firing.

“I was also happy with our centre-back, Tom Maine, a young reserve player from last year, who wore Corey Smith like a glove in the first half.

“Joel Stone was also a solid performer who did a power of work throughout the game.

“Most of our other players showed they are capable at senior level and will be sure to gain consistency soon.

“We certainly need someone soon to commit to being goalkeeper as we had two outfield players sharing the role.

“Will Cox-Haines would be a good option as senior keeper, but he is a solid player at sweeper.

“Hopefully, a keeper shows up soon.

“Knights played a solid game and held their formation well. I would say, overall, that we had more chances, but they took their opportunities and we didn’t.

“Knights were very hospitable after the match, putting on drinks and a barbecue, which the lads and I greatly appreciated.

“Thank you to Nick Harrison and the club.”

Knights scorers were Matthew Nowicki, Peter Frank and Andrew Robb.

In a reserves friendly, Nelson Eastern Suburbs beat Glenorchy Knights 5-4.

*****

Corey Smith has been selected for the Vikings Australian side to contest the Futsal World Cup.

Yosef Kolele was chosen for the Australian under-16s for the Vikings Junior World Cup series in New Zealand.

*****

Tilford Zebras beat Nelson Eastern Suburbs 10-0 in a friendly at Sandown Park on Sunday.





















Photos (Top to Bottom): Storm clouds brew over Wellesley Park and the match reflected this; Wellesley Park and strangely shaped storm clouds; Eagles' Jamie Vernon (left) confronts South's Kostas Kanakaris; South's Tom Roach in possession; Jim Pennicott congratulates Jonathon Lo on his goal; South's Shae Hickey (left) and Eagles' Andy Clark in a chase for the ball; South's Jim Pennicott is airborne against Eagles' Jacob Clamp; Eagles' ben Whitehall (left) battles with South's Loic Feral; South's Hugo Bladel controls the ball despite the attentions of Eagles' Ben Whitehall; South's Loic Feral (left) gets in ahead of Eagles' Andy Clark; Eagles keeper Nathan Pitchford is beaten by Loic Feral's shot; Eagles' Alex Leszczynski (extreme left) about to volley the opening goal; Leszczynski's shot hits the back of the net; Eagles celebrate Leszczynski's goal; Eagles' Ben Whitehall (left) and South's Loic Feral contest possession; South's Brazilian striker Mizael Linhares Caires limps off with a foot injury; Mizael is led off for treatment by Noel Clark; Josh Quon puts Eagles ahead on the picturesque Wellesley Park ground; Eagles keeper Nathan Pitchford takes a cross; South's Jim Pennicott beats Nathan Pitchford to put South ahead [PlessPix]

New Town Eagles eventually succumbed 4-3 to South Hobart at Wellesley Park on Sunday afternoon, but they gave the hosts a run for their money.

Eagles scored first through a magnificent strike by Alex Leszczynki after South failed to clear a corner. The ball fell to Leszczynski on the edge of the box and he volleyed an unstoppable shot past keeper Jess Van Hyster.

Frenchman Loic Feral equlalised a clinical finish from the left of the box after Jim Pennicott’s pass from midfield.

A long kick by keeper Nathan Pitchford led to Eagles’ second goal before the break. Josh Quon outpaced the South defence and scored to make it 2-1 for the visitors.

Fine goals by Jonathon Lo and Pennicott made it 3-2 for South Hobart before Mark Page’s speculative lob from range deceived the South keeper and bounced over him to make it 3-3.

Tom Roach, whose sights had been calibrated too high for most of the game, hit the winner when he finally shot low and beat Pitchford for the winner.

It was a physical and tense game and tempers boiled over at times, causing the referee some anxious moments in terms of whether to book players or even send them off.

Loic Feral was excellent for South Hobart, as was defender Cameron Williams.

South Hobart's Mizael Linhares Caires came off with a foot injury in the first half. He was probably not fully recovered from an earlier foot injury and would have been better off to sit this one out.

“It was like a cup final,” said South Hobart coach, Ken Morton.

“It was better than Southampton versus Man U last night.

“I thought it was a good game of football. Obviously, one team goes very long, very direct, very straight, very quickly and they do it well. People read and anticipate and run off and they keep you under pressure.

“But, I thought we had the ball for long spells and eventually the chances came and we put them away.

“Following yesterday’s game, it’s another good work-out for about 18 players, so we’ve done well.”

New Town Eagles coach, George Krambousanos, said: “I thought it was a very physical, hard game.

“Tempers became a little bit frayed, but that’s okay. I don’t think Ken minds that, and I don’t mind that. You’ve got some big boys out there.“The goal that we first scored was world class. I don’t care what anybody says. No matter which keeper was in goal, they would have copped that.

“Our third goal was, I thought, a little bit of an error from the young keeper, but we’ll take it.

“Did South Hobart deserve to win the game? I thought a draw would have been fair. Both sides fought well. We had a different type of game plan.

“We enjoyed it and the guys who have written us off already can go and jump.”