Port Moresby’s PRL oval was packed to a capacity of over 200 fans as MRDC Hekari United entered the field. Among the fans, Port Moresby based Fiji community turned up also to give support to their countrymen as they entered the field to take on Hekari United.
After the referee blew the whistle to kick off the first half, Hekari’s captain David Muta grabbed Hekari’s first free kick in the 2nd minute free kick but Lautoka headed away the ball before Hekari could take their chance to score.
Tuimasi Manuca tried to make a straight cross to his counterpart in the 4th minute but was unsuccessful when the ball landed in Lautoka’s backs. Another attempts followed by from Abraham Iniga took a shot but missed it, the same applied to Andrew Lepani which was saved by Lautoka’s goalkeeper, Parmesh PRASAD .
With numerous attempts by Hekari, it was all unsuccessful as Lautoka came hard with tight defense, making sure every attempt were cleared off their territory. In the 35th minute Hekari’s captain David Muta took a penalty kick which Alwin Singh’s tried to sink but missed Lautoka’s goalmouth and went out.
It was all cheering from the small group of Fiji on the main grandstand when the opening goal came from Lautoka’s captain Peni Finau in the 38th minute. Score now stood, Lautoka FC 1 and Hekari yet to score. The kick from the start line headed straight to Tuimasi Manuca who then tried to make a cross to Abraham Iniga but misses Iniga and Lautoka’s mid fielder took over the ball.
David Muta tried his next corner kick, four minutes before half time but Lautoka gave no gap to Hekari and shielded every gap they could find. Hekari struggled but did not succeed. Just before the referee blew the whistle, Hekari’s Alwin Singh was yellow carded for tackling Lautoka’s Isikeli Jeke who then took revenge of that and make an attempt but the ball headed over the Hekari’s net.
Lautoka’s Shameel Rao took his corner kick but Malakai Tiwa headed the ball out to the centre.
In the second half, Hekari pressured Lautoka with numerous chances but Lautoka maintained their stand and Hekari failed to convert their attempts into goals.
Hekari’s David Muta took two of his corner kicks in two separate occasions but Lautoka’s keeper caught it safely. In the 56th minute, Eric Komeng took a shot from the 18 yard but sailed way right.
After the crowd’s favourite, Neil Hans took the field in the 64th minute, he took his first shot, seven minutes later but went over Lautoka’s goalmouth instead.
The tougher the game became, Hekari went more harder this time, putting more and more pressure on Lautoka. Taking possession of the ball, Hekari made every attempt but Lautoka cleared all the ball infront of their goalmouth.
Two minutes before full time, and Lautoka’s captain was red carded for his dangerous attack to Hekari’s Alwin Singh.
In the final seconds of the full time and Andrew Setefano scored the miraculous goal to draw his team to Lautoka 1-1. Final score now stands Hekari 1- Lautoka 1