Report by Chris Caldwell
The reigning champions looked like they would be cruising to another title after only 28 minutes where Kieran Sweeney’s rifled finish into the roof of the net and Eddie Lewis’s delightfully placed free kick had them seemingly in control at 2-0 up.
Park had other ideas, however, and against the run of play Adam Candish tapped home after good work on the left from Francis Wanjiru, who then drew his side level on the stroke of half-time with a clinical near-post finish.
There wasn’t to be a romantic cup story in the end, though, as Stuart Harris, while losing his footing in the box, managed to fire home the winner on 72 minutes much to the delight of the Saints’ opening goal-scorer, Sweeney.
“I was cup tied so didn’t get to play last year so I’m very delighted we have won and made it back-to-back titles,” Sweeney said.
“Overall, with the team winning the cup on the day, we have to be happy with that and back-to-back titles for the first time is great too.
“We could have been two or three up by half-time but they took their goals well and we knew with the way the wind was in the second half they would make it tough for us and they did. But the better team won on the day.”
Meanwhile, Park skipper Dan Rose, who finished the game on a stretcher and with his leg heavily strapped, was in a surprisingly positive frame of mind at the final whistle.
“Obviously we’re the minnows in the cup, a side who has come a long way since the start of the season, which is our first year,” Rose said.
“We’ve dragged ourselves through in the cup, I’d say, but it’s good to be here on the day and sadly someone has to lose.
“I think it’s definitely a case of onwards and upwards for the club though because this will help us make a name for ourselves and make players want to come and play for us so next season we’ll go again.
“At the end of the day, they [Perth Saints] deserved it. It was a good game and some good football was played but someone has to lose on the day.”
Perth Saints 3 (Sweeney 6min, Lewis 28, Harris 72)
Victoria Park 2 (Candish 33min, Wanjiru 45)
Sunday, October 2, 2016
Venue: Inglewood Stadium
Referee: Anastasios Paraskevas
Assistants: Liviu Katona and Matthew Franken
Fourth Official: Ilija Prentoski
Perth Saints: 1. Sam Collins, 17. Renaud Clausse, 19. Rowen Cross, 4. Ryan Daniels, 12. Dan Doody (Cpt), 10. Francois Ferreira, 6. James McKensie, 15. Callum Roach, 14. Kieran Sweeney, 11. Jareth Tottman, 8. Gary Davies, 2. Joshua Van Moorsel, 3. Pat Hardie, 9. Stuart Harris, 16. Eddie Lewis, 7. Bryan McVey.
Victoria Park: 7. Tom Woiwod, 26. Dan Rose (cpt), 24. John Wyper, 34. Adam Candish, 73. Julian Chan, 81. Alan Gorman, 28. Karl Gorman, 27. Matt Gribble, 72. Dan Kenworthy, 36. Dan McLaughlin, 47. Isaac Sheehan, 70. John Soh, 77. Matthew Taylor, 80. Brenton Turner, 25. Francis Wanjiru, 37. Sean White.