New Zealand beats Fiji 1-0 in WCup qualifying

Stand-in captain Tommy Smith scored the lone goal as New Zealand

struggled to a 1-0 win over Fiji in its opening match at the

Oceania Nations Cup soccer tournament Saturday.

The Ipswich defender tapped home a rebound after goalkeeper

Simione Tamanisau failed to hold Leo Bertos’ free kick in the ninth


Fiji had several chances to equalize, the best coming in the

49th minute when veteran Roy Krishna back-heeled the ball to

striker Osea Vakatalesau on the edge of the box. But keeper Mark

Paston tipped Vakatalesau’s shot over the bar.