Joseph Ogilvie (@jogilvie17)
QSN made its first foray into New South Wales covering the Gold Coast Premier League match between Murwillumbah and Mudgeeraba.
It was quite an interesting drive in, navigating through cane fields to arrive at the Jim Devine Field as a heavy sun shower came down just prior to kick off.
The turn out for the game was rather impressive from both teams, with a lot of away supporters and a vocal home crowd.
It was very entertaining style of play with free flowing attack from both sides but their defence certainly let them down. Great from a spectator’s point of view, though I would imagine it would frustrate coaches.
Both teams have been languishing at the bottom of the competition table and were looking for a vital three points.
Mudgeeraba had a bright start and had two great chances within the first five minutes but failed to capitalise on either occasion.
Then Matt Hilton came into the game for the first time in the 7th minute, winning Murwillumbah a free kick, which he then put away beautifully in the bottom right corner.
Six minutes later Mudgeeraba struck back through Gurkan Atmaca who delivered a great finish from a cross in from the right flank.
Then Levi Hilton somehow found the back of the net when he curled a corner kick into the top corner in the 18th minute, once again giving Murwillumbah the lead.
Matt Hilton was again in the mix just two minutes later, and again it was a free kick, this time he produced a great save from the Mudgeeraba keeper that was tapped in by Matt Crompton.
Play continued back and fourth for the rest of the half with both sides throwing everything into attack.
Both teams scored once more before the break, Mudgeeraba through Brodie Jones in the 38th minute and Murwillumbah through Shaun O’brien in the 45th minute, leaving it at 4 – 2 heading into the sheds.
The game definitely slowed down in the second half after a frenetic first one, still there was many attacking opportunities creating an exciting display for the fans.
Matt Hilton again came to the party for Murwillumbah, toying with defenders in the 18 yard box before getting away a deflected shot which went in, giving Murwillumbah a 5 – 2 lead.
Mudgeeraba didn’t die wondering and Jones got his double in the 78th minute with a clinical penalty.
It didn’t have an effect on the outcome but Mudgeeraba went down to ten men in the 81st minute when Ben Avery received a second yellow.
Matt Hilton proved the difference between the two teams with his clinical finishing, classy touches and set pieces, given both sides had so many chances this was what split them.
Murwillumbah 5 (M Hilton 7’ & 71’, L Hilton 18’, M Crompton 20’, O’Brien 45) v Mudgeeraba 3 (Atmaca 13’, Jones 38’ & 76’)
Man of the match: Matt Hilton