Roux's raid & Reddy's reactions sink 'Nix

Central Coast Mariners have returned to winning ways following a 1-0 win over Wellington Phoenix at the iconic North Sydney Oval on Thursday evening.

Central Coast Mariners have returned to winning ways following a 1-0 win over Wellington Phoenix at the iconic North Sydney Oval on Thursday evening.

Phil Moss- men have moved to fourth place on the Hyundai A-League ladder after a first-half goal to New Zealand international Storm Roux - his first in Australia-s top flight.

It was a cagey start to the encounter with few clear-cut opportunities created by either side.

Stein Huysegems was handed a great chance to find the net in the 11th minute for the ‘Nix however his low strike was well dealt with by Mariners gloveman Liam Reddy.

Central Coast attacking ace Nick Fitzgerald came close to opening the scoring for Moss- charges shortly after following neat interplay between Marcel Seip and Trent Sainsbury. Unfortunately for the yellow and navy, his effort was deflected away for a corner.

Wellington forward Jeremy Brockie struck a free kick on target minutes later but Reddy made a diving save to his left.

Roux opened the scoring for Central Coast in the 27th minute after combining with former Socceroo Mile Sterjovski. Wellington defender Ben Sigmund failed to clear Sterjovski-s centre from the right, with Roux on the spot to prod home his first goal for the yellow and navy.

The Mariners were looking to double their advantage as Argentine playmaker Marcos Flores found the boot of Hyundai A-League 2012/13 Golden Boot winner Daniel McBreen who forced Moss into a superb save.

The visitors had a great chance to level the score after the interval as they were handed a penalty by referee Kris Griffiths-Jones after goal scorer Roux was ruled to fouled Manny Muscat in the area. However Belgian Huysegems found Reddy in inspired form, with the Mariners- ‘keeper producing a stunning save to his left to thwart the effort of the former Feyenoord attacker.

The Mariners were eager to add to their tally however Phoenix custodian Glen Moss was having none of it as he made one of the saves of his life in the 57th minute of play. Roux burst down the right before sending a precise ball into the box, which Fitzgerald connected with purposefully. Showing cat-like reflexes Moss tipped the ball over the bar for a corner.

In a bid to salvage something from the clash Phoenix boss Ernie Merrick introduced Paul Ifill for Jason Hicks with just under half an hour remaining. In his 30 minute cameo Ifill showed why he remains one of the class acts in the competition. And the former Crystal Palace man nearly drew Phoenix level in the 84th minute with his strike which again forced Reddy into action.

Wellington crafted the final obvious opportunity of the encounter when Brockie received the ball on the six-yard box with just five minutes left to play. Much to Phil Moss- relief, the New Zealand international sent his strike from a sensational position over the Reddy-s woodwork.

Following the game Central Coast Mariners Head Coach Phil Moss said he was pleased with his side-s capacity to grind out a positive result despite his team not playing its best football.

“It-s fair to say that it wasn-t one of our prettiest performances,” Moss said. “I thought we ground out the three points.”

“Coming off the back of a bad result on the weekend down in Adelaide I think it showed a lot of mental strength to find a way to win the game.”

“We were the masters of our own undoing with regards to the amount of possession they had. We just gave away too much cheap ball. We need to take a lot more pride in what we do with the ball.”

“The positive for me is that I have a group of boys in there who are quite dejected - they look as though they-ve lost the game because they-ve got a lot of pride in what they do and they know we weren-t good enough tonight.”

“But again it was a crucial three points for us - we were in strange surrounds, it-s not our home ground, and we-ve found a way to win the game so that-s a real positive.”

Moss also praised custodian Reddy, who kept his third clean sheet in four matches after conceding four times against Adelaide United last weekend.

“He was good. He copped a bit from the weekend with the mistake down in Adelaide and I think he showed some real mental toughness tonight to come back and put on a performance like that - he showed all his quality tonight.”

Central Coast Mariners 1 (Roux 27-) Wellington Phoenix 0 North Sydney Oval, North Sydney

Central Coast Mariners: 12. Liam REDDY (Gk), 2. Daniel MCBREEN, 3. Joshua ROSE, 4. Marcel SEIP, 7. John HUTCHINSON (C) (17. Anthony CACERES 90+2'), 8. Nick MONTGOMERY, 10. Marcos FLORES (19. Matt SIMON 75-), 11. Nick FITZGERALD, 15. Storm ROUX, 16. Trent SAINSBURY, 21. Mile STERJOVSKI (9. Mitchell DUKE 65-) Substitutes not used: 1. Justin PASFIELD (Gk), 13. Hayden MORTON Yellow Cards: Hutchinson, Montgomery, Reddy Red Cards: Nil

Wellington Phoenix: 1. Glen MOSS (Gk), 2. Emmanuel MUSCAT, 9. Kenny CUNNINGHAM (12. Tyler BOYD 74-), 10. Stein HUYSEGEMS, 11. Jeremy BROCKIE, 13. Albert RIERA, 15. Jason HICKS (8. Paul IFILL 63-), 16. Louis FENTON, 17. Vince LIA, 18. Benjamin SIGMUND, 22. Andrew DURANTE (C) Substitutes not used: 7. Leo BERTOS, 20. Lewis ITALIANO (Gk), 23. Matthew RIDENTON Yellow Cards: Fenton, Cunningham, Brockie Red Cards: Nil

Attendance: 6,755 Referee: Kris Griffiths-Jones