M3 Lose Out to Wayfarers
By Sean Lavarack
SHC M3s 1 - 2 London Wayfarers M2s
After two successive trips to the South coast, the 3s returned home to Sudgen Road to face a strong London Wayfarers side.
With limited availability due to a number of injuries, the 3s turned up with 12 and a half players as Benji Walker faced a late fitness test from an injury against Fareham; he failed.
Surbiton started the game well as they dominated possession in the early exchanges. Matt Johns missed the first real opportunity to open the scoring as he missed his backhand yards in front of the goal.
On his return to the 3s, Ed Miller looked dangerous with his aggressive tackling and pressing. And midway through the half he led an impressive counter attack, only to be shoved off the ball as he was about to shoot on his tomahawk.
The umpire initially raised his left hand to give a penalty stroke but somehow wangled his first move into a dubious short corner signal. And true to form Surbiton missed another short corner.
The game remained goalless until half time as London Wayfarers continued to grind out a solid defensive performance.
Surbiton continues to keep the Lion’s share of possession into the second half but London Wayfarers grew into the game with some counter attacks of their own which lead to the opening goal of the game.
From a free hit inside their own 25, the London Wayfarers centre half launched an aerial into Surbiton territory leading to a free hit inside the dotted 5 yard line. London Wayfarers took the free hit quickly by dribbling straight into the D and simply crossed the ball to Theo spare player on the far post; leaving their forward with his easiest finish of the season. Question we’re asked if the player moved the ball 5 yards before entering the circle but the umpire wasn’t interested and thought he moved it the required distance.
Surbiton struck back 10 minutes later through a Matthew Johns as he skilfully deflected the ball through his own legs from a Ross Bennfors cross.
With the scores level, London Wayfarers won their second short corner of the game. After an initial breakdown at the top of the circle, London Wayfarers cheekily scored their own deflected goal through the legs to take the lead with a quarter of the match remaining.
After a number of London Wayfarers cards, Surbiton piled the pressure in search of a late equaliser and point.
However, Wayfarers defended their goal well and managed to hang on for an impressive 2-1 victory to leapfrog Surbiton in the table.