After a scrappy opening, the home side were rocked when Auckland
were awarded a penalty, which was cooly converted to give the
visitors a 1-0 lead after 3 minutes.
Auckland also had a goal disallowed a few minutes later when the
referee ruled an illegal challenge on the Southern goalkeeper.
The home side were however also creating chances of their own
with striker Rhys Quarrell looking dangerous and having a shot
blocked, and fellow attacker Ben Kiore then having a long range
effort saved. Kiore also had a one on one chance soon afterwards
but lifted his shot over the bar.
It took until moments before the halftime break for Southern to
get their equaliser. Against the run of play, a lightning counter
attack forced a corner. A dangerous ball could only be chested by a
helpless Auckland player into his own net for an unfortunate own
The second half was a dogged battle with a few chances for both
sides. Southern keeper Stewart Catto pulled of a brilliant save to
deny what looked like a certain Auckland goal.
And in the final seconds Southern's Jack Pirie hit the top
netting with a brilliantly dipping shot that could have sealed the
Overall, an encouraging start to the season - well done