By Oliver Lees
Kyneton District Soccer Club has notched up its first win of the season in the women’s state league 4.
Kyneton defeated Brimbank 3-0 on a wet and muddy Sunday afternoon, as striker Anna Radkovich netted a hat-trick.
Kyneton president Ron Cole said it was good to be on the winners list after an injury-plagued start to the season.
“It was a really good win, the whole club and the team were super excited, hopefully we can go on and get a few more now,” Cole said.
“Honestly it’s been a struggle to keep everyone on the pitch, we had five of the girls out with quad injuries at the start of the season.
“Finally managed to get everyone out and it’s amazing what a difference it makes. Our three week COVID-19 break actually helped us in that regard because it gave the girls a bit more time to recover.”
Kyneton sits in ninth position after nine matches, with one win, two draws and six losses.
After a rocky start to the season that included five straight losses, Kyneton has been able to salvage some form, with just one loss from its past four matches.
This season has seen a drop in form from 2019, when Kyneton finished third on the table with a positive goal difference of 24.
But Cole said that on top of the injury list, the team was also forced to rebuild after all but five players departed the club.
“We’ve really just been trying to get the girls to gel together as a team because there are a lot that are new to the game,” he said.
“It’s a slow rebuild as we try to play the style of game we want to play, but it’s definitely evolving each week.”
Goal-scorer Jaclyn Camilleri was among the notable players to leave the club at the end of 2019.
Camilleri was the club’s leading scorer with 11 goals in nine matches before leaving for Gisborne.
The striker has continued her form with 15 goals to her name, as she’s helped her side maintain equal first place on the table.
Cole said it was promising to see the side’s current number eleven Radkovich find some form.
“We’d certainly been missing her for the first five or six games of the season, she’s pretty handy for us,” he said.
The club has also had its difficulties in maintaining their pitch.
As reported by Star Weekly, Kyneton was denied access to a $460,000 community sports grant from the federal government to improve drainage at their ground despite meeting the eligibility criteria.
Cole said he had been in talks with Macedon Ranges council to allow them to play at another venue, should their pitch become unplayable due to poor weather.
“We’re still waiting on money to fix the drainage unfortunately,” he said.
“The grounds are basically shot now after the weekend’s games so we’re hopeful it won’t impact the rest of the season.”