Minches pinch win at Riverside Lands
Amateur Football Combination Premier Division
The one word, apt description of this game would be distasteful: leaving a bitter taste in the mouth more often associated with sour grapes although in this case Old Meadonians would strongly deny such a connotation as the origins of what was affecting their taste buds.
Saturday's visitors to Riverside Lands, Old Minchendenians, arrived on the crest of a wave, with the multiple incentive of trailing their hosts by just a single point and the match being a traditional six pointer to march away triumphantly afterwards with the spoils. Throughout this match, the visitors, having recently mopped up the points by winning their games in hand and having scored twelve goals in their last three, showed that they had the ability to take the league title by legitimate means. More is the pity, therefore, that they could not trust their foot-balling skills to carry them further and had to resort to other methods to ensure success.
The game was hardly five minutes old when the referee was plainly to be heard warning one of Minches' players apparently for bending his ear in a passable imitation of one of Shakespeare's more infamous Venetian characters. From then on the healthy home crowd were treated to the gamut of what used to be termed school-boy fouls, designed to subvert the referee's authority and antics to con all three officials, updated to almost professional standards. Players leaped in the air rolled around writhing in supposed agony without real reason and although the referee did book one of the visitors for simulation, a lot went frustratingly undetected.
Both defences looked comfortably capable of keeping the slate clean until fifteen minutes to go when both assistants decided to get in on the act. One nodded off to miss what looked a straight forward off-side, allowing Minches' left mid-fielder to reach the goal line and cut the ball back for a magnificent strike from the edge of the area to finish the job and at the other end his colleague denied debutant Matt Allen the equaliser when he appeared to have beaten the off-side trap. Even in the last five minute grand-stand finish the Gods were not on Meads' side as first the ball would not sit down for John Shea to get it under the bar and with the last kick of the game Liam Palmer's half-volley was just over.
Team: Robinson, Shea, Pointer, McCombe, Palmer, Quinn, Costello, Thompson, Glover, (Allen), Eguae, C. Jones. Subs not used N. Jones, Graham.
March 17, 2012