The Gold Fields Men’s State Under 19s went down in the first match of their week-long exchange trip to Surabaya.
The WA side stuck to their task in a fixture which began in 34C heat but ultimately were outgunned against PS Copa.
The home side are a full-time satellite club of top-flight professional outfit Persebaya Surabaya, whose Under 18 and Under 20s are still to come for the West Aussies.
The PS Copa players, whose avearge age was 22, have come through their academy system together and they knew each other’s games inside out. They also had a full team of substitutes, which they made full use of in the conditions as they netted twice in each half to win 4-0.
This was the first time this Gold Fields XI had played together and with two players joining the set-up on Sunday after Belt Up Under 18 Cup duties, their squad of 12 oufield players were unable to build any pressure.
Axel Richardson of Rockingham City and Hayden Boffey (Subiaco) were the pick of the Gold Fields Team.
WA Coach Brad Hassell said: “They were a very good team. We weren’t exactly sure what type of team we were coming up against. You can see they have a lot of quality, an academy that trains together every day. Some very good, talented players.
“They are a bit older but I think the main difference being they are training day in, day out as a group, they know the style of play they want to play. It makes it hard for a team like ourselves that has just come together but that’s football.
“We were pretty much down to the bare bones with cramp came in near the end. They were trying conditions.”
Trying conditions and a long day for the WA side, who were up and out for a 7am training session alongside the Bhayangkara Academy U16s.
The WA squad arrived in Surabaya on Friday evening after a change at Kuala Lumpar.
They went to a Welcome Dinner which was attended by Australia’s Consul General to Surabaya Chris Barnes as well as Persebaya Director Chandra Wahyudi.
Mr Barnes spoke with the players, while in his speech he addressed how the players were following in a long tradition of Australian sides heading to Surabaya, with the first in 1928.
Describing his support for his local professional club, he said: “Persebaya is a very important part of the life of this city. Every day the people in this city will discuss Persebaya’s score, how they performed and their love for the team.”
The visit by the West Australians follows a week-long visit to Perth by the Persebaya U19s last year.