The first semi final of the Futsal Oz Cup pitted Fitzroy against Carlton. Some tight contests in the past and Carlton coming off an upset win over Pascoe Vale last week the Heart fancied their chances of pulling of a magical cup run. Those hopes lifted when An early cut back from Katie Foster saw Dharma Georgi turn one into her own net giving the Heart the lead. Fitzroy responded however with Sarah Richardson beating her player down the line and cutting back for Romy Heasly to tap home the equaliser. The Tigers then took the lead when Zoe Schaffner cut it back to Ebru Efe who tapped home making it 2-1 to the Tigers. It was soon three when Richardson’s solo run saw her toe poke home. A long range effort from Chloe Drinoczky had the lead at 4-1 before Georgi rifled home for a 5-1 lead. It seemed everything was going Fitzroy’s way as Richardson cut back another ball for Efe to finish as the game threatened to blow out. A team meeting mid court from leader Rebecca Davies inspired the Heart as they set about overturning the deficit. Davies struck home a deflected effort from distance before Katie Foster went one on one with Molly Boorman before finishing it off. On the half time buzzer Carlton struck again with Foster finding the net from a Thurlow throw as Carlton went into the break remarkably only trailing 6-4.
The second half began with Fitzroy stepping it up a gear as Sarah Richardson found some space on the left side before finishing to open up a three goal cushion. A goal late in the half to Romy Heasly sealed the deal as Carlton’s spirited fightback could not overcome their slow start which see’s them eliminated while Fitzroy progress to the final.
The second semi final pitted league Champions Richmond against last years winners Moreland. After a slow start to the half both
sides began to find their mojo and Richmond drew first blood when Mel Camilleri opened the scoring. Camilleri would then add her second of the game to have Richmond in a comfortable 2-0 lead. Right on the half time buzzer Rebecca Saber pulled one back for Moreland to have them trailing by the barest of margins 2-1 at the half time break.
The second half began in a similar fashion with Richmond continuing to boss the game and it paid dividends as Camilleri completed her hat trick to again restore the two goal cushion. Camilleri was having a day out as she found her fourth of the game to put her right up there in the race for the golden boot. A late bursting run down the flank saw Claudia Fruscalzo cut the ball back which was turned in for an own goal from Saber and that was all she wrote as Richmond progress to the final where they take on Fitzroy at 9pm.
The final of the Futsal Oz Cup was a mouth-watering prospect as Richmond took on Fitzroy. First vs Second from the regular season and both looking to be crowned champs. Fitzroy started strongly and took the lead when Sarah Richardson finished from a side ball. Richardson then made her way down the right flank finishing again to double the Fitzroy advantage early in the first half. Richmond pulled one back when Em Coppock struck but Fitzroy looked in the mood as another sweeping counter attack saw Romy Heasly finish to have the Tigers leading 3-1 at the half time break.
Early in the second half Fitzroy added their fourth as a good ball from Ili Jakab was flicked home by Elaina Vatcky putting her side 4-1 ahead. With plenty of time still remaining Richmond set about chipping away at the deficit and got one back as Penny Bakopoulos struck from range to bring it back to 4-2. Straight after a time out Coppock added her second of the contest as she headed home from a good long ball from Christine Fonua before Coppock struck again deflecting the ball home in similar fashion to Vatcky as the pair were back on level terms.
The game ended that way and went into extra time. Neither side found a way through in the extra time period which saw us go all the way to the penalty mark to decide this one. Richmond converted their first three penalties while Fitzroy put two away only to miss on the third occasion with Fonua denying Dharma Georgi to seal the Double for Richmond and end another remarkable season on a high for them.