Abdullah Wahidi was doubting his ability early on Saturday, until he struck a quick hat-trick of goals for Goulburn Valley Suns and then his doubts were soon forgotten.MATTHEW GALEA April 15, 2014 3:20am
Abdullah Wahidi scored a hard-fought hat-trick for the Goulburn Valley Suns’ under-20 side at the weekend.
Abdullah Wahidi doubted he was cut out for National Premier Leagues Victoria under-20 soccer midway through the first half on Saturday.
He’d already failed to take three one-on-one opportunities against Port Melbourne Sharks, and after failing to make the most of a number of opportunities in the previous week’s match against Heidelberg United, Wahidi was ready to give up.
‘‘I’d get through and I’d just kick it straight at the keeper instead of going around him or something. I panicked,’’ Wahidi, 19, said.
‘‘I just started to feel like I wasn’t good enough and I even thought about giving up, but ‘Serks’ (Serkan Aktas, coach) kept me on.’’
Then the first goal went in.
Then the second followed and before long the third.
It was a crazy 17 minutes for the striker, but it was just the tonic he needed.
‘‘Once I got the first one, I was a lot more composed,’’ Wahidi said.
‘‘We had lots of chances to finish and it was good to start finishing them in the end. All the set ups came from my teammates, so they made it easy for me.’’
The quality of the team, which has taken a win and a draw from its first four games, not including the game against Ballarat Red Devils that was abandoned with the Suns 3-1 up due to the broken leg Red Devil Jake Francis suffered, has come as a surprise even to Wahidi.
‘‘I wasn’t very interested in playing initially, so I missed the first game,’’ Wahidi said.
‘‘I came and saw the game against Oakleigh (that finished in a 1-3 defeat) and I was impressed. I saw that it was a good league and a big league and I wanted to get involved.’’
The decision has proven a golden one so far, and even in the short time he has been a Sun, Wahidi has seen big improvements in his game.
‘‘The training is really good. We’ve done a few good finishing drills where I’m learning how to push defenders off and use my body,’’ Wahidi said.
‘‘I’m a lot more aggressive now as a striker. I never used to push off or anything, but now I’m being taught how to shield defenders and use my body, I’m learning a lot.
‘‘I’m still only 19, so I think it’s good for me to be playing in the 20s, but hopefully next year I can play seniors.’’
Football nut and AFL Goulburn Murray league operations manager Simon Devine is looking forward to the challenge of carrying on the proud tradition of the Goulburn Valley Football League.
Police investigating a break and enter at a Mulwala club more than 10 years ago are renewing their appeal for public assistance by releasing an image of a person they believe has information to assist them.
Tatura’s Victory Hall is set for a big year as preparations get under way to celebrate the hall’s 90th birthday in September.
Former district resident and award-winning television producer Joanna Werner will no doubt be shopping for a glitzy gown ahead of the Emmy Awards in New York on February 20.
Rochester Secondary College school captains Dom Atley and Tim Poole have been accepted to study biomedical science in the first step towards becoming doctors.
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Fire destroys key public buildings in Seymour
Finley Henry Matheson was bestowed one of the highest Australia Day honours.
Heathcote Hostel residents were treated to a visit from Heathcote’s favourite horse, Sub Zero, as part of Australia Day celebrations.
Recent weather conditions have come as a mixed blessing for farmers, with high rainfall and humidity providing a respite for irrigators as well as difficult growing and picking conditions for fruit growers.
Darren McLoughlin only started playing croquet seven years ago.
From orchards to harvest to shelves, a new exhibition will celebrate the Goulburn Valley’s iconic fruit industry. The Photos of the Fruit Industry exhibition will run as part of the SheppARTon Festival in March and aims to share memories and history of an industry that has shaped the region.
Former Benalla footballer Tom Rockliff has been named captain of the Brisbane Lions Football Club.
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