Result : WIN 4-1 vs Blueharts
Match Report : Neil Murphy
Two games to go as we mustered on the sand pitch for the challenge of Blueharts 6’s – a team we drew 2-2 with earlier in the season but lucky not to lose in the final seconds.
Our heroic form this season has faltered with the last three games yielding two losses and a draw – and dropping from second to fourth albeit just two points separating us, Welwyn and Bishops Stortford for second place and promotion.
A tough game ahead but a tough team of 5A’s regulars were ready and waiting plus debutant Oliver Heaviside adding to our youth and consequently our energy levels.
A good formation, well drilled on how we do things and lots of good passing in the first 6 minutes ended as it always does for the 5A’s – we were 1-0 down to a ferocious strike from the top of the D. We are used to this these days, so, unabashed, we got our heads down to rebuild…and so we did.
Midfield and forward line worked really well together – Daniel in control at centre-mid, where we always expect a Spencer to be. Daniel and Simon linked well with Yuvraj and Chris Ray providing real energy and a threat from right back. Randall caused no end of problems and Phil, despite being injured, threatened regularly.
We had much of the possession and the defence contained the Blueharts counter attacks with excellent man marking by Mark, Luke and Giles.
The pressure began to pay off with an equaliser from the talented and vastly improved Yuvraj – it’s hard to recall a game where he hasn’t scored! This, followed swiftly by a Randall classic and 2-1 at half time.
This game was far from over though and Blueharts had enough skill to cause us problems and we knew from last time they would score goals if they get the chances.
The second half, however, was as good a half of hockey as the 5A’s have served up – great stuff – and the noise from the supporters on the balcony was inspiring – even though they were all watching the Men’s 2’s on the Water pitch – so too, Luke but he still did his job!
As we got stronger and spread the play wide, the game got a little tetchy – the message, to stick to our jobs. The pace of Oliver and tackling of Simon and Rob in midfield kept control and ensured plenty of ball to playmakers like Chris, Daniel and James.
Goals followed for Southgate – Chris Ray completed an excellent day’s work with a short corner conversion and Randall bagged his second.
4-1 at the final whistle and back to winning ways to complement the Spring sunshine. News came in on the teleprinter that Welwyn had lost, giving us a 1 point advantage with one to play but no news yet of the Bishops Stortford result…keep watching…
Man of the Match went to Daniel but with honourable mentions for Randall, Chris and Yuvraj.