Team Men’s 2nd Team
Opponent Barford Tigers 5
Date November 25, 2023
Result Win
Score 1 – 0

Barford Tigers Men’s 5s 0-1 CoB Men’s 2ndXI

Goalscorer: Ben Matthews

A frosty morning couldn’t thwart the midday game at Hampstead Hall Academy. With certain parts of the Astro still thawing, the warm ups/ drills showed different characteristics with the ball showing little bounce with the hard surface. It would be the same for both teams and a new learning curve for the newer players of hockey.

The home team won the toss and got the advantage of the low sun to their backs. It made the visitors’ job in defence more difficult with the sun in their eyes. The previous meeting was a goalless draw and COBHC was unfortunate not to win on that day.

As the game started, both teams again seemed pretty even. Both sides had good possession in the middle of the pitch but gradually the home team gained the edge. With a star player beginning to flex his considerable skill. He linked up with his midfield and pushed hard into the heart of the visitors’ defence. Jack was called upon to make five fantastic saves from the all-star. A couple with his gloves and a few with his feet and an amazing stick stop from a short corner. As pressure built the visitors gave away silly penalty corners and the pressure grew even more. Once again, the all-star got a few drag flicks at goal which were edging evermore closer. As he finally got his range in, he hit the post giving the player on the line no chance as it whizzed past his ears (luckily, the post saved the day). The visitors, as always, grafted and worked hard in midfield to protect the back line and eased the pressure as the half time whistle blew. 0-0 at half time.

The midfield guided by Ben, Stan and Jordan started to get a grip of midfield in the second half and broke into the home team’s “D” a few times causing problems of their backline. From one of these breaks the ball ran kindly to Ben who lobbed a high shot above the keeper. (As both teams switched ends it was the turn of the Barford keeper to struggle with a low sun in his eyes). The keeper flapped at the looping ball only to put the ball into his own net.

With the visitors taking the lead the all-star on the Barford Tigers team pressed hard looking for the equaliser. Driving through the heart of the COBHC defence and getting powerful shots at goal but all went narrowly wide. As the time ticked by, he started to win possession from the halfway to press home the attacks at the back line. Stan started tracking back and closing down these driving runs with good tackles.

Midway through the second half a COBHC player blocked the all star player and both players clattered into each other. After the tangle an altercation began. The umpires deemed the act a red card for Barford. Both umpires emphasized any more appealing will result in more cards. The warning was duly noted by the visitors and with the opposite team down to ten men the visitors ran down the clock to get all three points.

It was a tough game for our younger squad members and to their credit they played absolutely brilliantly. Even getting high praise after the game from Stan.

Man of the match was closely contested and was shared between Jack in goal with great saves and Isa in midfield playing a strong role in the wing.

Categories: Match Reports