Jokers 1 - 2 Purley Walcountians 2s (A)
By Tony Haycroft
24th September 2022
Scorer for SHC: Ben Newton (SC)
Team: Tony Haycroft GK & Capt, Dan Barnicoat, Ben Newton, JJ Draper, Oli Treherne, Toby Thompson, Jon Bowen, Stephen hardy, Harry Hodges, Jim Hey Capt, Trevor Mallinson, Roger Kuipers James Lloyd
A game of two Captains – both for Surbiton. The Jokers first league game ended in defeat unfortunately in this keenly but fairly contested game. The missing balls and first aid kit were returned by the culprit Saity to the Club and the co-captains (Jim and Big T) with help from Lloydy set off to arrive at the ground early and sort the game plan. Lloydy carried the balls and remarked, “Saity’s got a heavy ball bag” and it was downhill from there. We welcomed new boys Oli and Roger and welcomed back Colt Toby; Dan is already a vet of the Jokers having played and scored last week.
The Purley youngsters started fast and hard as we expected but after weathering the first minutes the Jokers settled into their usual fluid game and dominated the play for the next 20 minutes. We conceded a corner which was a well worked move to the left post. Despite Capt Jim making the 10m dive worthy of Tom Daley he could not get in front of the 230 years younger winger who deflected the ball in for a goal. A second corner was conceded quickly but the shot was saved by an outstretched left foot. But within a couple of more minutes a through ball which touched no one headed towards Big T who, remembering Strictly was back that night, twinkle toed around it only for their forward to get a slight touch putting it past him. Two Captains not leading by example.
A rousing team talk by Capt Jim (let’s play at our pace, i.e. slow) and whiteboard explanation by Ben Newton galvanised the Jokers into a more fluid second half. Jokers had the balance of play and Purley posed little danger for the second half. A few corners came our way and on one with the ball bobbling around for what seemed an age Ben stepped in decisively and touched it home. Four minutes to go. Dominance and two more corners followed with the final corner count being Jokers 7, Purley 3 but we only managed to convert the one and the game ended 2-1.
This will be one of our most competitive games and we acquitted ourselves well despite the result. The average age discrepancy was highlighted when a friendly Purley player during the game, clearly admiring the Hey coiffure asked, “Do you dye your hair white?”. Jim put him right and pointed out it was wholly natural i.e. he’s 51.
Big game next week against the 4s. Clearly Surbiton will win.