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.’’
The facilitator of a new program to help empower women with a disability to become leaders in the community says it is time to stand up.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The second annual Bonnie and Clyde Rods, Rats and Rides Festival fired up at Tatura Park at the weekend (April 11-12), drawing thousands of petrol heads and rockabilly music lovers to Tatura.
The Victorian government today guaranteed the future of the National Centre for Farmer Health.
Hundreds rose early for Dawn Services across the district on Saturday to commemorate 100 years since the Gallipoli landings.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
Heathcote police are appealing for information after a woman was injured in a hit-and-run incident on Anzac Day.
A new book, Men from the River Bends, honours Cobram-Barooga and district soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice after enlisting in World War 1.
The Deniliquin Domestic Violence Liaison Committee hosted a community lunch at the ‘Rocket Park’ on Thursday to celebrate the launch of its new banner.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
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