Casuals and Pelham extended their unbeaten start to the league campaign with a 5-3 win over SC Birchanger Reserves. Pelham needed a better performance than last week in the county cup and a performance on par with the weekend before against Foxton Old Boys. The home side started well and there was some good football in parts, Tim Shaw testing the keeper early on and Ant Hamilton-Pilot have a couple of headed chsnces from corners. However after Pelhams good start it was Birchanger who took the lead. The away team drifted in the corner and what looked like a push on Mark Jolley in the 6 yard box meant the ball struck him and went into his own net, 1-0 SC Birchanger Reserves. Pelham then stopped playing how they initially were and tried too hard to force the equaliser making easy mistakes and letting the opposition well and truly into the game. They stopped creating the chances that they had in the first 10 minutes and let Birchanger off. The remainder of the half didn't see too many more chances and it stayed 1-0 at the half. After some thorough discussions at the half Pelham changed formation to match the opposition up and tried to press Birchanger higher up the pitch. This change payed off instantly as some good work from Pelham saw Joe White pick up the ball in the middle of the park and play a ball through for Tim Shaw, putting him one on one with the keeper and making no mistake in his finish, 1-1. Pelham continued to play better than the first half and created more chances. The home side finally took the lead around 10 minutes later, a great cross into the box from the left from Liam Perry was headed in at the back stick by Dan Arran, 2-1. 2-1 soon became 3-1, as a Dan Arran header was flicked on to Tim Shaw who again one on one with the keeper struck the ball into the net, 3-1. Pelham were starting to pull away and needed to kill the game off. However they let Birchanger back into it, as a Ant Hamilton-Pilot clearance off the line landed at the feet of an unmarked Birchanger attacker in the box, who tapped into the net, 3-2 but poor marking from Pelham. However the two goal lead was restored as some good work from Tim Shaw saw his effort blocked only for Jamie Richards to be in support and following up with the rebound 4-2. But Pelham once again let the away side back into it, as a Birchanger shot was spilled by Dan Monk and the ball broke for the away teams striker, his effort was blocked and once again it landed to an unmarked Birchanger attacker in the box who tapped into the net, similar finish to the second goal. At 4-3 it was game on, but Pelham for the third time got their two goal lead. Hakim Medfai found Tim Shaw on the right hand side in space and he leathered the ball into the far corner, 5-3. Pelham did not want a grandstand finish and didn't want to let Birchanger back into it again. Thankfully they didn't and the game finished 5-3. The result keeps us unbeaten and now top of the league but the performances haven't been there yet. This seasons squad will be finalised this week and with players coming in and back from injury we are going to start having more than 16 every week, which means competition will be fierce. Therefore everyone needs to be on their toes and start putting performances in every week, otherwise starting places won't be held down. Two players had a big impact on today's game in particular, Tim Shaw once again with a hat trick and an assist put a big performance in, and Joe White coming on changed the game with his work rate, passing and work on and off the ball, so those boys are today's men of the match. Onto Albury Saints next weekend and we need to stop relying on out scoring teams, we will try to get a settled back four over the next few weeks and tighten things up, giving our goal difference a bit of a boost.