Match Report - 02 Dec 2017, Old Wykehamist Football Club 1st XI beat Old Malburians
OWFC 1s had came off the back of 3 tough games against the Arthurian League Prem’s strongest trio - Tonbridge, Foresters and Carthusians - and performed well in periods of each, but come away only with a hard-fought point and two tough defeats. Two games before Christmas against Malburians and Lancing required two wins to go into Jesus’ birthday celebrations feeling safe and comfortable in the table.
The O-Dubs beat Malborough in the away fixture in October 1-0 with a dramatic late Donald winner, and it was the same left-winger, again put through by Goulding with a chipped ball, taking on his man directly, cutting in and his deflected shot went in the near post early on in the game.
It was 1-1 soon after with a good headed OMs equaliser, as defending set-pieces again not the Dubs’ strongest suit. But when the Dubs got on the ball, they cut OMs up with precision, with Essex surging up the channels, Matt Black spritely on the right, and Mike Hodnett “Hodnetting" around in the pockets. The Dubs got a 2nd through a classic Essex channel run and finish.
After the break, the game remained tough and combative, but with the Dubs knowing that they had the quality to win the game. Miles Skinner rolled back the years from full-back, with Sever and Mercer typically rock solid at the back. A quick free-kick released Donald, who beat the keeper with an effort that was trickling across the goal, for right-wing supremo Charlie Court to emphatically rifle the ball home from 1 yard.
More chances at 3-1, at both ends, and with one chance squandered, OMs went up the other end ruthlessly and seemed to score a nice chip out of nothing. Again the game was in the balance, and for 20 minutes, OMs tempted to turn the screw, with a number of chances, putting the Dubs under the cosh, and some pathetic penalty appeals. Big up Al Wheal for some welcome saves.
The clock was ticking, and while it looked on a knife edge for a while, with 7 minutes to go the OMs keeper misplaced a pass and Matt Black fired it straight back first time, acutely from 25 yards into the net, and - as Black ostentatiously raised his arms in the globally recognised sign of “not celebrating” against former colleagues - the game felt won. Essex had time to fire in a 5th late on after giving their full-back a case of twisted blood.
The Dubs now sit 5th in a very tight 10-team Prem, with Lancing next week.
Goals: Donald, Essex (2), Court, Black
Team: Al Wheal, Pete Fuller, Hugo Sever, Rupert Mercer, Miles Skinner, Tom Goulding, Fred Thomas, Mike Hodnett, Sam Donald, Matt Black, Charlie Court, James Essex.
Old Wykehamist Football Club 1st XI 5 - 2 Old Malburians ()