14 May 2013

Sport: Standard of play in O-League rising

11:19 am on 14 May 2013

Ba football President Rishikendra Kumar says there has been a definite step-up in overall quality in this year's Oceania Champions League football competition.

The Fijian champions were knocked out 7-1 on aggregate by Auckland City in the semi finals, having gone through the group phase unbeaten.

While their playoff run has come to an end, Rishikendra Kumar says they've learnt a lot.

"Auckland City, Waitakere United and Hekari - they have won O-League in the past and they have rubbed shoulders with professional players and they have got the exposure and they have brought in that exposure into the Champions League. Each time we play a team with professional players we learn and then our players and our district players and other district players they do learn from us as well. It's all gaining as each time we play and things have really changed from last year to this year - it was very competitive level of Oceania League 2013."

Defending champions Auckland City will meet cross-town rivals Waitakere United in Sunday's O-League final, who eliminated Vanuatu's Amicale FC in the semis.