The NRFL hits its straps this weekend with the third round of matches for the Premier League, Division One and Division Two.
Visibility for the league has improved through the @LottoNRFL twitter account keeping screen-scrollers updated with Retweets of all the days action from around the leagues – effectively creating a Soccer Saturday from Tauranga to Whangarei.
This doesn’t happen without clubs putting in though. Volunteers working the official or unofficial accounts for clubs are now important for results getting out there – even if the results may include the perspective of the club involved (nothing wrong with a little bias I suppose).
The newly revamped NRFL website included video previews from Melville United and Waitemata F.C this week – also included were match highlights of North Shore United’s 3 – 2 victory the previous week.
The availability and relatively low cost of a decent camera and the ease with which highlights can be cut and uploaded to YouTube means that you can now revisit Marc Evans’ opening day hat trick against Waitemata – if you’re into that sort of thing.
What it also means is that sooner or later one of the fixed cameras pitchside or on a balcony at a Northern League ground is going to capture an absolute worldie, or an absolute shocker – and with the internet as your audience, there’s the chance it could go viral.
It’s not unknown for that to happen after football matches in New Zealand. Last year’s OFC Champions League at North Harbour saw A.S Tefana’s Mickael Roche go worldwide after an clearance went awry.
So too did Samoa’s Kiwi F.C kicking off, literally, with Fiji’s Nadi F.A in which six red cards and a 4 – 3 result also pulled in the views. When you compare the average views of OFC content online to these two games, they certainly jump out…
Admittedly neither of those two examples showcase the best of the game, but having scooted around the NRFL I’ve seen my fair share of wondergoals which couldn’t be accurately described other than ‘bloody hell’, none of which were ever recorded for posterity.
With any luck before the season’s out the NRFL might have its own equivalent to Labu Pan’s ridiculous bicycle kick, Joao Moreira’s goal of the season contender against Team Wellington or even whatever the hell Team Wellington and Waitakere were playing at in their semi-final.
John Palethorpe lives in South Auckland which is very far away from Fratton Park and Champion Hill. Having been told there was no football in New Zealand, he was delighted to find that there is.