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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 9 April 2016
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 9 APRIL 2016 27 SPORT Tigers honour Les Manning Bentleigh Greens skipper Wayne Wallace (R) has been a dominant force in the Greens midfield in recent BentleighSouth battles. NPL heavyweights face off in grand final rematch Sharks go hunting for Bergers Two eagerly awaited Hellenic derbies feature in round seven of the NPL 1 this Sunday. They include a grand final rematch between the two dominant Victorian teams of the last two seasons, Bentleigh Greens and South Melbourne, followed by the meeting of Heidelberg United and Port Melbourne Sharks at Olympic Village. Lakeside is the stage for the resumption of the intense rivalry between the two teams currently sitting first and second on the ladder. The Greens have had the edge in recent encounters, twice denying Chris Taylor's team silverware with wins in last season's NPL grand final and the Community Shield final, in this season's curtain-raiser. They'll go into this match arguably stronger up front than what they were in their last two encounters, with striker Matt Thurtell having returned this season from a long-term injury. South’s Golden Boot striker Milos Lujic is also back after missing the Community Shield encounter. On paper there's little separating these two sides, with both having the same points and goal difference. The Greens' strength and power in the middle has proved decisive in their last two encounters with South, and may prove a major factor again. Kick-off is at 4.00 pm at Lakeside. The second Sunday derby sees fourth-placed Heidelberg host third-placed Port Melbourne Sharks. Port Melbourne has quietly made its way up the ladder with minimum fanfare. Last week it scored an excellent 2-nil away win at Green Gully thanks to an Alec Goodwin brace. At the same time the Bergers were putting six past close neighbour Northcote City in a ruthless display. Although scoring freely, the Bergers' defence has also impressed conceding just two goals in its last five matches and keeping three clean sheets. On Sunday Oakleigh Cannons hopes to continue accumulating points when it travels to Epping Stadium to take on the youth of Melbourne Victory. In Saturday action, Northcote City hosts Avondale FC, with both teams looking for a breakthrough first win of the season. Battle of Crete veteran gets the VIP treatment from Richmond Football Club on the eve of his 103rd birthday NELLY SKOUFATOGLOU The Richmond Football Club honoured Les Manning last Thursday, one of the few Anzac survivors who fought in the Battle of Crete in WWII. Alongside 2,500 other young Australian men, he sailed on the Dutch Costa Rica and found himself in Crete just before the German invasion in 1941. The ship was attacked and sunk by the Germans but Manning survived, and with the remaining members of Victoria's 2/7th Battalion, he took part in the battle of 42nd Street in Suda Bay, standing up to Hitler. After the Allied forces surrender in 1941, he was captured and sent to Germany where he spent three-and-ahalf years as a prisoner of war Veteran Les Manning (C) with his daughter Lynda Banks (R) and John Rerakis (L) standing between Tigers players. PHOTO COURTESY OF JOHN RERAKIS. until his repatriation by the Americans. Manning, who is not only a hero of war, but also one of the most committed RFC fans in Australia, was handed a custom-made jumper with his age as his number for his 103rd birthday. "I was really looking forward to the day, it was a great experience, especially meeting some of the players," Les Manning told Neos Kosmos. "Thanking all who have been involved in making this a great memory for me." John Rerakis from The Pancretan Association of Melbourne, who organised the event, also expressed his enthusiasm. "Les is most likely the oldest Tigers supporter standing, a hero footballer. He used to spend his boyhood days on this field before he went to war. I'm happy to see it's [the event] made his day." After the celebration, a chuffed Mr Manning sat in the stands where he once enjoyed watching ‘Captain Blood’ Jack Dyer in action and shouted: "Richmond better win a flag because I'm running out of time. I've only got about 15 years left in me." Les Manning gets excited over his RFC jumper with his daughter Lynda (L) and John Rerakis. Les Manning sits in the stands reminiscing about old times. Savvas Mourgos signed by Arsenal The Greek midfielder is the latest signing for the club Academy midfielder Savvas Mourgos has signed his first professional contract with Arsenal. Academy midfielder Savvas Mourgos on his first professional contract. PHOTO: ARSENAL FC TWITTER @ARSENAL The Greek 18-year-old has been with the club since the start of last season, and in his short time has featured regularly with the Under18s; to date he has played 18 league games for Frans de Kat's side, scoring twice. Mourgos, who was previously playing for Panionios' Under-20s side, was spotted by Arsenal's scouts while playing in the Ferroli Cup with his confidence on the ball and surging forward runs. The playmaker primarily plays in the centre of midfield, but is versatile and if need be can play further forward as well as at full back. On Arsenal's website, the club took the opportunity to officially extend its well wishes to the newly-signed player. "Everyone at Arsenal would like to congratulate Savvas on his contract and looks forward to his continued development with the club," the website stated.
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