A-League: Emotional Phoenix dedicate Wanderers win to Christchurch shooting victims

Wellington Phoenix took another stride towards the A-League playoffs, with a 3-1 win over the Western Sydney Wanderers in the capital on Sunday night.

But the win was the last thing on the minds of the players and coach Mark Rudan, given the atrocities in Christchurch on Friday.

Fifty people lost their lives, after shooters opened fire on two mosques at Deans Ave and Linwood Ave.

Before the match, the Phoenix and Wanderers came together for a touching tribute to the victims with a moment's silence, with players from both teams and the referees forming a circle, while Dave Dobbyn's 'Welcome Home' played over the speakers at Westpac Stadium.

Despite his team producing one of their best performances of the season, Rudan didn't want to talk about the result at the post-match press conference.

The 43-year-old began his presser by apologising in advance for not talking much about the football, before discussing how the terror attack affected the squad.

"I'm not going to talk much about the game," Rudan began. "The most important thing is what happened a couple of days ago.

"It's shaken everybody up at the club. It's shaken up my players and me.

"It was important that we played our part, and that was for the victims and their families, and the whole country. The whole country's mourning.

"This world doesn't deserve something like that. It's tough to talk about, it's quite emotional.

"I've grown very attached to not just Wellington, but New Zealand, and it's made worldwide headlines.

"A lot of people were asking questions, I've got a lot of Muslim friends. It's just so sad and hard to put into words.

"We're so fortunate to be living in a country like this. You think about those people who come to places like New Zealand and Australia, they've got the ability to say what they want to say, do what they want to do - they've got freedom.

"And it gets taken away by a lunatic? It's just wrong."

Rudan then broke down in tears, after his heartfelt words.

Roy Krishna.
Roy Krishna. Photo credit: Photosport

On the field, striker Roy Krishna, midfielder Mandi Sosa and forward David Williams all found the back of the next for Wellington, as they consolidated their spot inside the top four. 

After scoring his goal, Krishna, who is married to a Muslim, pointed his hands to the sky, before dropping to his knees in prayer for the people who lost their lives.

Krishna had tweeted earlier in the day, it was "probably one of the most difficult days for us", before leading the line impressively and notching his league-leading 15th goal of the season.   

The Fijian was sent off later in the match, after receiving two yellow cards.

The result means Wellington remain in fourth, sitting eight points clear of seventh-placed Newcastle Jets.

The Phoenix are back in action against the Jets on March 30.