A first round win for the first time since 2006. Don't look for any omens in that though.
The score did flatter South a bit. The second half was not nearly as good as the first, and if the Zebras were a bit more clinical with their limited chances, they may have made more of a game of it. As it is, they were disappointing for most of the match - whether that's due to an inadequate list or an off day is yet to be seen.
The potential for lots of goals for South this season was indicated by a Kyle Joryeff double, with Jason Trifiro and Dimi Hatzimouratis also scoring on their official South debuts. Poor play in defense by the Zebras in defence cost them two early goals, with ex-South player Carl Recchia being uncharacteristically responsible for one of those goals.
South's defending was a bit haphazard at times, but for the most part looked better than most of the pre-season efforts. As in the times of yore, goalkeepers will be faced with the challenge of looking into a setting sun. Peter Gavalas seemed to be affected by it when he made an awkward attempt at saving a long range shot.
Joryeff was injured in an incident right on half time, and while he started the second half, he was replaced by Gianni De Nittis just minutes into the second half. Why De Nittis was subbed on first before Hatzimouratis I'm not sure - the latter eventually came on replacing Trent Rixon.
We looked dangerous on the counter, and should have finished the visitors earlier than we did. Seems like there's still work needed to get the team gelling. If that's our average output though, we could be in for a good season.
Clarendon Corner Kindergarten Crew
Seems like Clarendon Corner have settled into our grandstand, taking up the bay nearest the scoreboard end. Better sound under the roof. Great to see a spit roast 'Hellas, Ole' chant being started with the youngsters in the new stand. Will that continue in subsequent home games? Who knows, but it was good to see it happen.
Looked very poor against the Zebras. Lost 3-1, but could have lost by much more. More concerning was the apparent lack of skill across the board. First touches were atrocious, attitude at times just as bad.
Silver Surfer Scenario
I'm not a fan of silver or grey tops in any circumstance. Confusion circulated yesterday as to why we were wearing this year's silver away top in a home game. Rumour going around is that the kit supplier Adidas has stuffed up the orders of several VPL clubs, including ours. But the blue shirts will be available for when we need them, which will be the round four match away against Richmond.
Even though we have two gates available, it looks like we'll only be using one of them on match days - in case you're wondering, the in use one is our traditional entrance.
Was nice to get in with a membership card with a bar code on it. Got scanned through like I was at a major stadium instead of a cinema.
The Zebras mascot a acted like a bit of a twit, but that's what mascot's are there for. I wonder if either us or Zebras will get a fine for the mascot's Zorba dancing.
Scoreboard was good - hopefully we get a match clock running on it soon. Can see the bloody thing from way outside the stadium, too.
Lights looked good, though weren't really necessary. Field was immaculate. Announcements over the PA system nice and clear.
The 'only sing when you're merging' chant was taken out of the woodwork. Love that one.