Magnificent Seven for Mongooses
By Chris Ralphs
Mongooses 7 – 0 Addiscombe M4s
In true "away in Croydon" fashion, we assembled at push-back time with 9 men on the pitch with three people victim to traffic and their choice of route. The pre-match pep-talk was the same as usual when you're a man or two down: just keep the ball!
Mike Q had always been doubtful for the start but actually arrived before Rich Murray and Stu, so we actually pushed back with ten on the pitch, but with the ball retention mindset still in place... Within a couple of minutes of careful possession hockey we create a barrage of chances, eventually being converted by Sean Peche... I'm not saying it was pretty, but it was possession and pressure converted into a goal. Rich Murray was subbed on as the first goal was scored and with an extra sub up front, we proceeded to run at them more and more with Charlie, Connor and Ciaran all adding to their defence's worries (but not the scoreline). Some great centre forward predatory striking and Rich Murray converted two more of chances that were presented to him by some really nice passing and disciplined hockey. One of those in particular was tee'd up by Connor, who was weaving some absolute magic up the middle of park with a combination of mazy runs and deft lay-offs at opportune times.
At 3-0 Addiscombe came back at us several times with some quick breaks and creating a few decent attacks of their own, Stu, Adam and Jon managed to control most of them, but there were a few decent strikes that made it through and credit to Flynn for the clean sheet as one or two of those could easily have gone in!
The second half we started back in control and although a Addiscombe made a few decent breaks, throughout the half they never had more than a couple of really strong strikes on goal. All of these were mopped up by the defence and/or Flynn who was called on a few times and dealt with the one real series of strikes from Addiscombe really comprehensively.
At the other end, we continued to create a lot of chances, one of which was converted Brad and an absolute Shane Warne-style spinner of a miss-cue that twisted and turned in from Rich Murray, hat-trick completed. A couple of strikes from the top of the D from Connor and Chris made it 7-0.
There were several contenders for MoM, but Connor came through as the universal decision as he had caused Addiscombe headaches from the first minute to the last and could probably have scored another half dozen if he hadn't been such an unselfish team player.