Peninsula 5 (Hornby 2, Feuerriegel, Gauci, Rigley) def. Mt Gravatt 0
Mt Gravatt: Short, Sao Jose, Trueman, Stewart, Austen, Okada, France, M.Sciacca, Leite, Giannangelo, S.Wani, Watson, Allington, Benning, B.Sciacca
Peninsula:Buchanan, Gauci, Buhmann, Jenkins, Moon, Feuerriegel, Cleary, Hornby, Kelly, Tung, Marraiya, Baty, Rigley, Fuller, Fairgrieve, Fisher
By Phil Davis
Peninsula Power produced a physically dominant display and continued their drive to sixth position and the last semi-final spot with an impressive 5-0 victory over Mt Gravatt Hawks at Dittmer Park on Saturday evening.
Matt Hornby, playing at centre-forward, twice got behind the Hawks defence in the first half and twice converted his opportunites allowing Terry Kirkham’s side to go into the break with a two goal advantage. After the resumption, Shaun Feuerriegel, Luke Gauci and Graham Rigley capitalised on the complete dominance by the away side to take Peninsula to a five goal victory which seemed to be a justified result on the balance of the play.
For Mt Gravatt the crucial moment of the game and possibly the season came when Warren Moon, who had been re-shuffled to centre-back, was yellow-carded for a late tackle on Yoshi Okada which saw the in-form Japanese striker carried from the field nursing what looked like a serious ankle injury. Shortly after the Hawks also lost Igor Sao Jose to injury and for the remainder of the match were unable to create any meaningful chances.
Peninsula were good all around the park. Feuerriegel, Hornby, and Steven Cleary looked dangerous all night and the centre backline pairing, in the absence of Scott McNicol, of Moon and Nathan Kelly out-muscled and out-played the lightweight Mt Gravatt makeshift forward pairing of Sam Wani and Vinny Leite.
The “yourBPL player of the match” award could easily have gone to any of those players but it was youngster Jonathan Marraiya who caught the eye with an impressive debut performance in the centre of midfield. Marraiya was strong in the tackle and, most importantly, played the linkman role to perfection with countless sweeping Power moves being created by his distribution.
Whilst Peninsula may very well be marking time for the last five rounds, it’s a completely different kettle of fish for Mt Gravatt who are immersed in a relegation battle with Pine Rivers and Beenleigh. Next weekend they travel to Chris Green Park to take on the Lions in what will be the game of the round with both sides knowing that this will be their best chance to avoid the drop to Division One next season. The injuries to Okada and Sao Jose could not have come at a worse time, particularly considering the return to action of the impressive Jaspal Benning.