21 Oct 2011

Phoenix A-League fortunes on the improve

6:13 am on 21 October 2011

After weeks of bad news, the Wellington Phoenix coach Ricki Herbert finally has something to smile about before Sunday's A-League football match in Perth.

Pre-season uncertainty around the club's ownership was followed by a rash of injuries and topped off last Sunday by two red cards in the Phoenix's 2-0 home win over Newcastle in round two.

And just to complete Herbert's selection miseries, captain and central defender Andrew Durante was set to miss the trip to Perth, staying at home to await the birth of his first child.

But then the A-League match review panel rescinded Nick Ward's red card and Durante and his wife Sarah's daughter was born midweek.

Number one goalkeeper Mark Paston's rib injury looks to be clearing rapidly, too, fullback Jimmy Downey's knee injury is also on the mend and striker Paul Ifill could be available to play the Melbourne Victory on October the 30th.