» Six more sign for WaiBOP United

WaiBOP United is pleased to announce some further player signings ahead of the 2013/14 ASB Premiership season.

These players are:
Mark Jones (Hamilton Wanderers).
Raymond How (Hamilton Wanderers).
Adam Luque (Hamilton Wanderers).
Scott Hilliar (Melville United).
Federico Marquez (Ngaruawahia United).
Josh Nelson (Tauranga City United).

With Aaron Scott already on the books, this brings WaiBOP United’s confirmed playing squad to seven.

WaiBOP United Head Coach, Peter Smith, is pleased to have been able to add these six young yet proven Northern Region Football League (NRFL) performers to his playing squad. “All these players will bring their own strengths to the playing group,” says Smith. “They will be significant contributors to our efforts during what will be a challenging ASB Premiership season.”

For the Hamilton Wanderers trio selection in the WaiBOP United squad is reward for their strong and consistent performances during their club’s 2013 NRFL Premier League campaign. “I have watched Wanderers a number of times this season,” explains Smith. “Mark, Raymond and Adam have been key to the success the club has had this season and are the equal of any player in the Premier League in their positions. They’ve all been involved, at various times, with Waikato FC in previous summer seasons and will know what is expected at this level.”

As for Melville United’s Scott Hilliar, Smith says his selection was a no-brainer. “Scott has been one of the stand-outs for Melville this season and it looks like he’s already becoming a media darling,” he chuckles. “Seriously, though, he has everything we need – ability, athleticism, enthusiasm, dedication, youth – and I sure we’ll see him come on in leaps and bounds in the WaiBOP United environment.”

Hilliar is a national age-group 800m athletic champion and has been combining his university studies with a position at the Waikato University Football Academy.

For his part, Federico Marquez has been a revelation for Ngaruawahia United and is currently the second leading goal scorer in what is a very competitive division. “Freddy is a dynamic player, he can score goals, which is a rare commodity, and he is surprisingly good in the air for a small guy,” explains Smith. “I’m delighted to have been able to bring Freddy into the WaiBOP United fold and in doing so fend off the interest being shown in him by other ASB Premiership clubs. He’ll be very good value for us.”

To date this season Marquez, who hails from Uruguay, has scored 18 goals in 16 league games for Ngaruawahia.

Tauranga-based Josh Nelson is a young player Smith has known for a while. “Josh came back from Australia in 2010 to play for me at Tauranga City United and he’s been one of their leading players ever since,” says Smith. “He’s a technically gifted and skilful play-maker and I’ll be very interested to see how he adapts to the requirements of the ASB Premiership. Both Che (Bunce, WaiBOP United Assistant Coach) and I think he won’t have any problems making the step up.”

This latest batch of player announcements is in line with both Smith’s and the WaiBOP Football Federation’s vision for their ASB Premiership side. Cam Mitchell, WaiBOP Football CEO, says it’s important to show that players plying their trade for clubs in the WaiBOP region have a genuine chance of playing at a higher level. “We have a clearly defined pathway from junior football to senior football and on to national league football.”

Mitchell is also pleased to see several players who learnt their football at smaller clubs make the grade. “Mark and Raymond came off the Taupo AFC production line, while Scott played his junior football at Matamata Swifts,” says Mitchell. “This shows that clubs across our region are already more than capable of producing national league quality players, and we hope that will continue as WaiBOP United develops.”

For more information please contact:

Peter Smith, WaiBOP United Head Coach

Cam Mitchell, CEO, WaiBOP Football Federation

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