Old Meadonians 5 Polytechnic 1
Old Meadonians powered into the semi-finals of the A.F.A. Middlesex and Essex Senior Cup with a performance that added further ‘P’s’ to joint coach Paul Rumley’s ‘Power, Pace, Passion’ mantra but pretty was not one of them. With painstaking and persistent probing, they tested near neighbours, Polytechnic’s, defence to destruction, dismantled it and left it in tatters for the humbled visitors to limp back over the A316 to concentrate on their league aspirations.
Poly, who, while not in the top tier of the vaunted Southern Amateur League, are top of the second division with one loss all season and a healthy twenty-six goal difference, must have travelled with more than hope, especially in the light of the giant killing about to be visited on the big boys in the F.A. cup, only, eventually, to be thoroughly woken up and finally brought low.
True, the visitors were out of the traps the quicker and the first to bare their teeth with just ten minutes gone when poor marking on the edge of the area allowed a cut back to be rifled in off the underside of the bar. However, this goaded Meads into action and the visitors were never allowed back into the chase as their hosts quickly took charge with wide men, Peter Eguae and Jack Costello, soon making space on the wings and spearing in telling crosses.
Immediately a header from mid-fielder Andy Thompson was just wide and his mid-field partner Dave Brennan was twice unlucky as he met Costello crosses. Pack leader Ed Glover weighed in with another near miss but the inevitable equaliser came on twenty five minutes, this time from a Costello corner. Poly failed to clear and full back John Shea put the loose ball in from ten yards.
Meads could have been three up by now and were just settling for a one all roasting at the interval when full-back Kevin Quinn, casting himself back to his days as a Ryman Premier Division striker, soared onto another Costello torpedo-like corner to head the ball into the roof of the net.
Rory Vermeulen’s terse half-time verdict that Poly were there for the taking was to prove to be only too true. Peter Eguae, leading the charge in spite of continuous illegal efforts to stop him made the first incision on the hour, cutting in from the left past three defenders and putting the ball into the far bottom corner from the edge of the area and then, five minutes later, to emphasise his point, repeated the manoeuvre to put a curler into the far top corner.
The coup de grace was administered with ten minutes on the clock by sub Ryan Bright who superbly volleyed in a Brennan cross from fully twenty five yards. Despite not scoring, striker Ed Glover shaded Peter Eguae to the MoM award for his brilliant and selfless leadership of the line.
Squad: Robinson, Shea, Pointer, McCombe, Quinn, Costello, Brennan, Gerrish, Thompson, Eguae, Glover, Chapman, C. Jones, Bright.
January 29, 2013