OFC Nations Cup 2002
Auckland, New Zealand 5-14 July
Match 5, Day Three (Sunday 7 July):
Group B - North Harbour Stadium, Albany
Final Score: Solomon Islands 2 Tahiti 3
(Halftime 2-1 Solomon Islands)
Solomons coach says loss not a setback
By Peter Rees - OFC Media Officer
Solomons Islands coach George Cowie was a distraught man after his side blew
a two-goal lead to ultimately go down 3-2 to Tahiti on Sunday. The loss
virtually rules the Solomons out of semi-final contention with the
high-flying All Whites up next on Tuesday 9 July.
But he denied the loss was a setback saying there were enough positives to
build on for future campaigns. He added the lessons learnt in that match
would serve his younger players well. He confirmed at least four players in
his current squad would be involved in the Solomons Olympic Qualifying
campaign next year.
The Scottish-born Cowie said the tight schedule was tough for his players
with the lack of recovery time, but did not offer this as an excuse. Cowie
believed luck hadnt gone their way saying the ball did not bounce our way
on many occasions. He rued missed chances in the first match against Papua
New Guinea last Friday and again when it counted against Tahiti.
Goals to Patterson Daudau and Commins Menapi early in the first half put the
Solomons in the drivers seat and the men in yellow were starting to look
like the team many had anticipated.
However, they sat back and did not finish several other opportunities. Cowie
says the crucial turning point in the game was when Tahiti hit back with
only three minutes remaining in the half. Sylvain Booene blasted a
sensational shot from just outside the penalty box to bring Tahiti back into
The Solomons went into the break with a 2-1 advantage, but it was Tahiti who
took the initiative in the second half, playing with more composure and
organization. Tahitian go-to-striker Felix Tagawa, quiet against the All
Whites last Friday, suddenly came to life with two shots that were just off
the mark in the space of a minute. His persistence was rewarded soon after
with his first goal of the tournament that drew Tahiti level at 2-2. That
goal lifted the Tahitian players who consistently found a way through the
Solomons defence. With the match headed for a draw, the Tahitians managed
the winning goal in injury time to Steeve Fatupua-Lecaills - a just reward
for his teams second half domination.
Afterwards, Tahitian coach Patrick Jacquemet could hardly disguise his
delight in winning. After the disappointing loss to the All Whites, the win
puts Tahitis qualifying campaign back on track and a return to the OFC
Nations Cup semi-finals, a possibility after missing out two years ago in
Papeete. Jacquetmet praised his players for bouncing back so soon after a
physically draining match. He blamed this for the lackluster first half
effort. Fortunately, his charges were able to collectively raise their game
when it counted in the second half. Tahiti now faces Papua New Guinea in its
last Group B match on Tuesday 9 July.
8 min - #11 Patterson Daudau (Solomon Islands)
25 min - # 9 Commins Menapi (Solomon Islands)
42 min - # 5 Sylvain Booene (Tahiti)
57 min - # 9 Felix Tagawa (Tahiti)
90 min (injury time) - # 2 Steeve Fatupua -Lecaill (Tahiti)
# 7 Timothy Paoka for #14 Stanley Waita (67)
#18 Henry Faarodo for #11 Patterson Daudau (75)
#19 David Firisua for #10 Batram Suri (82)
#19 Gabriel Wajoka for #10 Tony Senechal (75)
#13 Abel Terevarua for #18 Raimoana Bennett (82)
Yellow - # 4 Vehia Maurirere - TAHITI (29)
Yellow - # 2 Saeni Daudau - SOLOMON ISLANDS (65)
Tahiti: 2. Steeve Fatupua-Lecaill 4. Vehia Maurirere 5. Sylvain Booene 6.
Tetahio Auraa 7. Samuel Garcia 9. Felix Tagawa 10. Tony Senechal 14.
Geiamano Guyon 16. Daniel Tapeta 17. Angelo Tchen 18. Raimoana Bennett
BENCH: 3. Iotua Kautai 8. Teva Zaveroni 11. Naea Bennett 12. Harry Tong Song
13. Abel Terevarua 15. Larry Marmaouyet 19. Gabriel Wajoka 20. Xavier Samin
Coach: P. JACQUEMET
Solomon Islands: 1. Severino Aefi 2. Saeni Daudau 3. Mahlon Houkarawa 6.
Martin Ruhasia 9. Commins Menapi 10. Batram Suri 11. Patterson Daudau 12.
Vivian Wickham 14. Stanley Waita 16. Henry Koto 17. Gideon Omorikio
BENCH: 4. George Suri 5. Richard Ruakome 7. Timothy Paoka 8. Leslie Leo 13.
Jerry Allen 15. Jack Samani 18. Henry Faarodo 19. David Fisirua 20. Fred
Referee: Matthew Breeze (Australia)
Assistant Referee 1: Dhindera Kewal (Fiji)
Assistant Referee 2: Nathan Gibson (Australia)
Fourth Official: J.Sosongan (Papua New Guinea)
Match Commissioner: Lee Harmon (Cook Islands)
Referee Inspector: Hari Naicker (Fiji)
Crowd attendance: 1000 approx
Weather: Gusty winds, rain at times, mostly showers with some sunny periods
Start time: 1:00pm