January 23rd. The time had finally arrived for the athletes of the OTFC 2’s to put their intensive winter training programme into full effect. A revived 13-strong squad eagerly burst onto the pitch, poised for an almost certain, post-Christmas victory. Satisfied that the chest-beating neanderthals sharing the changing room moments before did not appear on their pitch, the whistle blew and the footballing commenced.
Early on, Tiffs resembled an organised team playing a decent passing game, with some promising attacks into the final 3rd. The quality of the final ball however, was not as clinical as it needed to be to threat the opposition’s goal. Tiffs were punished for not converting early chances, as a long throw into our box was met by the advancing head of the oppo striker. 1-0 Suttonians.
Following this was a period of hopeful long-balls from into the final 3rd and before the break, Tiffs’ slump in quality was punished with a goal from another Suttonian set piece. This time a corner.
Half Time: Old Suttonians 2 – Tiffs 0
Hopefully somebody wrote down or recorded what Dicky said during half-time, as Tiffs turned things around in a big way in the 2nd half.
After drawing some good saves out of the Suttonian keeper, and a solid attempt from Will shaking the cross-bar, Tiffs opened their account for the day through Tom Nichols on the right wing, squaring a pass from Tommo into the back of the net. Old Suttonians 2 – Tiffs 1
The attacking pressure from Tiffs persisted and the reward came through an equaliser from the head of MOTM Charlie Mortimer, assisted by Colin Avery from a corner. 2-2
Not satisfied with the prospect of one point, Tiffs pushed on, looking to turn the tables on the (albeit, substitute-less) Suttonians. The opposition had a handful of chances and forced an impressive display of saves from Hobbs between the sticks.
Eventually, Tiffs determination culminated in a third goal, this time from the boot of Colin, who grasped the opportunity to offset some earlier (missed) clear-cut-chances. Assist credit goes again to Tommo. Old Suttonians 2 – Old Tiffinians 3.
Then… things got scrappy. Pop shots assaulted Hobbs’ goal, and the Tiffs defence and resilience was tested with a number of corners. In the true spirit of not scoring from open-play, Old Suttonians got their equalising goal from another corner, not leaving enough time for Tiffs to react.
Though late to get going, the IIs put on an inspiring display of determination and good attacking football in the 2nd half. Hopefully the start of a strong 2nd half of the season.
Full Time: Old Suttonians 3 – Old Tiffininans 3.