Mens 3s v Burnt Ash

Match date: 18/01/20
Opposition: Burnt Ash
Home or away: Away
Result: 2-1
Scorers: Wynn Roberts (1), Phil Cole (1)
Man/ Woman of the Match Phil Cole
Match Reporter Jon McIver

First game back of the second half of the season and New Beccs consolidated second place in the league with a decent win against a side that defended for 95% of the 70 minute game. Burnt Ash were on the wrong end of a 6 nil tonking in the reverse of this fixture at HSBC in October, and clearly had damage limitation as their main concern in this game. They defended resolutely and occasionally made a break into our half, but came up against a constant wave of green and yellow.

New Beccs started slowly but started to dominate from about 10 minutes in after the Christmas rustiness had been run off. A low sun in our faces and some poor umpiring became quite frustrating, but we eventually resigned ourselves to both. Nick Williams was picking up the loose balls all over the pitch but Burnt Ash always seemed to have 3 or 4 defenders ready to clear the resulting cross. Leon went close and Phil Cole started to penetrate down the left wing, but we eventually went ahead midway through first half when Wynn expertly dispatched a simple short corner. The good work was undone a few minutes later however, when our defence, who were as desperate as everyone else to score, were dragged too far up field. This had happened at the beginning of the game but when it happened again it resulted in Burnt Ash breaking quickly and scoring in spite of the ball clearly hitting an opposition shin pad and hand in the build up.

The half time score didn’t reflect our domination, and a resolute team talk and some sublime substitutions managed to turn things around in the second half. Jeff Pitcher came on a right back and started to dominate the whole right half area and feed incessant balls to Ewan Williams, who was starting to penetrate the opposition D. This link up and some better shaped defence and long corner routines (we only had 4 shorts all game but must have had at least 25 longs) lead to long periods of New Beccs domination. Phil Cole had missed a couple of sweet chances on the left post (including one disallowed goal which I'm still puzzling about) until he popped onto a goal keeper's error and scoped in from a metre out. The Burnt Ash keeper had played well up until then and had made a number of crucial saves, but I think the incessant pressure finally got to him.

So 2-1 up with 10 minutes to go, we played out the game with some fluent passing and attacking moves, at last finding our rhythm from last year. Burnt Ash had time to get their only short corner of the game, but once we went ahead again there was only going to be one winner in this game.