Surbiton L5s 3 – 4 London Wayfarers
I can’t believe the season is over already and here we are at the last Match Report of the 2018/19 season. So here follows yet another piece of fiction that bears no resemblance to the actual game but acts as a useful vehicle to poke fun at the usual suspects.
What should have been a straightforward journey to Battersea proved to be a bit of a Sat Nav challenge for some. Jo had an excuse (being from the era when a Sony Walkman was considered hi-tech) but really, Colette & Zach, as paid up members of Gen Z you really should be able to switch between default and satellite on Goggle Maps to see where the pitch is. ;-)
Despite scooter-girl Emily chasing small children from the playpark monkey bars pre-match we decided composure was in order while we waited to get on the pitch. Held up by a massive crowd of 2 small boys using up half a pitch to showcase football skills that would have had Kazakhstan worried, tested our patience to the limit.
Sadly the restricted warm-up time proved costly as Wayfarers, pumped up for their promotion decider, hit us hard and fast, punishing us for being slow to settle. I’ve tried to blot it out but I think it might have been 3 goals in the first 5 minutes.
Now, most teams would have given up at this point but as we’ve had a season of practice at staring hopelessness in the face, we just shrugged it off and took the game to them.
OM(f)G - what followed was quite possibly our game of the season.
Colette & Ciara regained control of the defence with composed tackling and clearances while Giselle clearly had rockets in the heels of her shoes to launch out the goal mouth at defending corners, frustrating Wayfarers attempts at stretching their lead.
We also threatened them with a few corners trying wide lefts and even a superbly executed drag flick, agonisingly bouncing of the top left corner of the crossbar/post before Colette reverted to route one and just smacked it into goal, hard and low to give Wayfarers a (metaphorical) slap in the face.
Chances came and went. I fired a ball through to Roos who took on the keeper but sadly not to be. Natalie, rolling on in bursts of 2 minutes in a vain attempt to retain the skin on her heels, came really close too. Gemma was driving the defenders mad playing catch me if you can (they couldn’t) and I even managed to dent the side post (sadly on the outside). But it was a well worked team goal with Bethan setting up a very patient Elani that provided our second goal. Jenny was poised to steal it ensure it went in but thought better of the outburst from Elani if she denied her her first goal of the season.
It was a game of 3 periods really. The first 5 minutes best forgotten; the rest of the first half where we battled back and then finally a second half that we dominated, but true to form of the season as a whole, we were unable to convert enough of our chances.
Talia, reinvigorated with the half-time vitamin C fruit pastilles, forgot her cold and started driving up through the waves of opposition and firing balls into the D. Jo’s caffeine energy drink (cardiac-arrest in a tin) hit optimum and she chased down the defenders to pressure their attempted outlets. Sophie and Jenny continued to wind up the opposition with amazing weaving runs through midfield dodgy swinging sticks as they went and Emily provided the essential communication in midfield and the necessary positive energy.
Bethan worked amazingly hard to find routes into the D from the right hand side with magneto-stick in full flow but Wayfarers weren’t for giving up. They even tried to take out Saffy with a well aimed shot in behind the pads. Clearly it was a bad one as Saffy wanted a minute or two off the pitch. Zach and I briefly considered the implications of a kicking back before we both sprinted the length of the pitch with the magic fruit pastilles and even more magic ice spray to convince Saffy she really, really, really needed to stay on.
A final fabulous goal that fell to Roos, improvising at a PC to strike it towards goal only for it to deflect high into the goal beyond the reach of the keeper. I’m not sure who looked more surprised at the realisation it counted as a goal, Roos or the keeper. A fabulous fightback but sadly not enough to salvage the draw (3:4 final score).
However, it was our performance of the season with a gutsy, resilient fightback displaying proactive, tenacious teamwork and despite the result we all finished smiling and laughing. Zach may have had a stroke on the sideline from built up stress but we were all on a high.
Thanks to Coach Zach for believing in us and to the ever-loyal, fabulous band of supporters. It meant so much to us having you all there.
MOM: pretty tough to call this week, but for cool-headedness when it really counted it’s Ciara.
WOMBLE: several worthy candidates -
MIA (can’t use sat-nav): Jo, Zach & Colette
Super stressed & nervous on the sideline: Zach
For ID checking Natalie before handing over the prosecco: Tracey (for the record she’s 24 and was delighted!)
For multiple offences: almost falling over taking joggers off during Zach’s team talk, poor injection followed by fresh-air shot, general sweariness, going home with a completely unsigned teamsheet, realising only skill I’ve taught Gemma this season is how to open a Prosecco bottle with minimal spillage: Val
For abandoning us to go see steam trains (which it looked like Seb hated): Tiff
But obviously it’s Emily for scaring small children out the playpark and general scooter-idiocy