The instruction was clear at the start, go hard and make sure we don’t concede early. TItans duly responded. The first fifteen minutes showed flowing hockey and a flurry of chances. Howie, Nigel and Greg in midfield were interchanging well and the forward line of JT, Ben, Anand and Tony were creating space up front. At one point it looked like Laurence was going to score from centre back, a great run beating a number of players saw him with only the keeper to beat, a dubious tackle from Spencer looked like a definite P flick but the umpire thought otherwise. Spencer looked out of sorts and it felt like just a matter of time for the Titans to score.
As is the way however, Spencer scored on a break away, some loose passing in the Spencer half from Titans saw Spencer break down the left and pass to a player at the top of the D who duly despatched well. Titans were not deterred however, surely a blip, and continued to play some good hockey.
The half time team talk was a damp affair, the rain came down in sheets and there was much discussion regarding things to do and where it was going wrong. In the end it was agreed to tighten up the mid-field and continue the way we had at the start of the game. The rain slowed as we went back on the pitch and again Titans dominated. TItans started to win the ball in the Spencer half and were causing problems. A goal was imminent given the way Titans came off the blocks in the 2nd half. Another SC resulted in Nick (Biffy) Robinson stepping up D top and as the accurate push came out from Howie, Biffi executed the drag flick which was a bit too tough for the keeper to see and it ricochet off the pads and into the goal 1-1. Lets go was the shouting from the Titans. We were now in the ascendancy and the Titans quickly capitalised on another wave of attack. A move down the left saw Tony(Big Hands) on the ball, he tried a reverse stick shot, the keeper saved and gave it back to him, he then tried again only to miscue and play a perfect cross to Nigel who tapped into an open net. More pressure from Titans and again we won the ball in the Spencer half, Peds played a neat one two with Anand down the left. Peds took the shot, aiming low far post the ball ended up in the roof on the near post. I would go as far as saying that where the ball ended up was a surprise to all concerned. Peds made the most of it by celebrating wildly. The game looked again like the Titans could not lose.
It seemed that Spencer had other ideas, with their bench of 15 to Titans 12 they pushed up and made their numbers count. Titans defense started making mistakes, Peds and Brian guilty of one too many aerials or just passing straight to them from the back. Maybe we felt sorry for them, who knows. Spencer got a few short corners and finally managed to smash a strike into the bottom corner. More pressure from Spencer ensued, more mistakes from Titans, eventually from a misdirected pass Spencer picked up the ball and attacked down the right, a neat cross to the centre forward who steadied himself and finished well.
Titans were rocked but determined, Spencer seemed happy to get back to 3-3 but Titans were not. The last ten minutes saw Titans again take control and start to attack with fluidity, a couple of flashing shots across the D, the Spencer defense were concerned. With a few minutes left we heard the shout from Nick(Biffy)Robinson. “Just get a short corner”. Eventually that’s exactly what we did. Nick drag flicked but the keeper saved, in the melee another corner was awarded. Then the final whistle blew. In the huddle we looked at each other, Nick(Biffy)Robinson had that look in his eyes, “this is mine”. He did not look in the mood for a debate. We all expected Nick to flick again, but he had a plan. He dummied the shot and played the ball right towards Brian, Brian played a perfect pass back to Nick who was now on the P spot. First time shot from Nick and the ball was in the back of the net. The famous ZigZag had worked again. The celebration and relief were immense. Loudd cheering from Titans and the topsy turvy game was done and TItans were victorious. A great game and the Beers and food afterwards tasted so much better.