OTFC IIIs 1-1 Reigatians Vs
It was a game of few chances, one that really should have ended nil-nil, a score as rare as a Helix Fossil, but … it didn’t. OTFC put out a strong side but there was an early blow in the form of an injury to centre-back Miguel Hodgson. The defence was reshuffled, only to be forced into another change a few minutes later when Lee Orchard was on the receiving end of a stray elbow from Reigate’s eloquent striker and had to patch up a bloody brow. The game ebbed and flowed with a couple of half-chances falling Tiffs way, but it wasn’t all one way traffic. Tiffs were given a let-off when the aforementioned striker scuffed a clear cut chance and Mike Lutz heroically cleared off the line in his best impression of Rio Ferdinand style, last-ditch defending.
The second half was much the same, with both teams failing to carve out clear chances. Tiffs kept themselves fresh with staggered rotation of players and then a chance came the way of the opposition. Our friend, the striker, had the ball just outside the penalty area and was being well marshalled by two defenders, meaning he was only able to manage a scuffed left foot effort which trickled into the penalty area. Stand-in goalie, Owen Griffiths, who had been doing an excellent job, especially with his kicking getting us so far up the pitch, jogged over toward the path of the ball. Then … it happened. Griffiths decided that the ball was going wide and seemed to skip over it. The ball, however, had other ideas and bounced in off the far post. There was silence everywhere, except from Mr Lutz. It was a bitter blow, but could have happened to anyone and Owen made up for it with some important saves and punches.
The equaliser came late in the day. Some good play on the right-hand side from the man of perpetual motion, Fardeen Nariman, and Bappo Reynaud led to the ball being cut back for an arcing cross into the box from Matt Power. Cue a perfectly timed run and bullet header from the Catalian Stallion, GG [editor’s note: I’m pretty sure GG is from Tenerife], and wild celebrations all round. It wasn’t a game either side really deserved to win and a point is a good point to take away from that position. The biggest positive to take away was the effort that everyone put in, from front to back, especially after going a goal down.
Hope you recover soon Miguel, and congratulations to Baptiste Reynaud for winning MOTM.