Conditions could hardly have been worse as Greshams congregated at Ipswich Academy for the game with Trinity. Tommo, dazed and confused from a night on the lash, had driven up and down Lindbergh Road and past his teammates half a dozen times, only on finally arriving, to be told location had changed to Gainsborough.
There had been a couple of late call offs for Greshams. Tony, noticing the weather and not wanting his make up to run, came up with some unconvincing tale about his dogs being ill. Beeson, in what some would see as a comeuppance for a post on Facebook about his hard life in Dubai, had a waterskiing injury. Steve Adams on the other hand just confessed "got too pissed last nite".
So it was once again a bare but strong 11 for Greshams: Josh in goal; Tommo, Steve H, Cookie, Rob; Froudy, Tom, Neil Potter and Cashen; and up front the free scoring duo of Rob and Burton.
The game started, as it would finish, in lashing rain, but Greshams came out strongly and were soon causing problems for the Trinity defence. One move ended by Cashen taking a wild fly hack at the ball that turned into an embarrassing air shot. Shortly after though the veteran made amends. Good work from Rob down the right took him to the bye line, where his cutback evaded Burton; the defender got caught flat footed in the wet, and Cashen running on to the ball struck it just inside the post for the opening goal of the game. It looked at one time like the junior Cashen might take the ball off his father's toes but mindful of wanting his driving lessons to be paid for, Tom wisely got out of the way.
Shortly after, Greshams made it two when a long throw from Tommo was headed on by Rob and directed into his own net by the hapless Trinity defender.
At this point Greshams had their poorest spell of the game and allowed Trinity to come into proceedings. Their cause was not helped when Tommo, who already seemed bewildered to find himself running round a football pitch, had the ball strike his head at point blank range. Tommo went down as if pole axed and from that point on, definitely didn't know what day of the week it was.
Trinity almost scored when the ball bobbled round from a corner ending in a headed goal line clearance from Cashen, who had to leap with his 5 foot 3 inch frame to reach a ball most players would have controlled on their chest. Shortly after this though, Greshams made it 3. Froudy latched on to a ball from Rob, ran on, cut inside, and caught everyone by surprise by hitting it left footed, straight into the bottom corner. A fourth goal for Greshams soon followed as Froudy turned provider, picking out Rob who produced a fine chipped finish into the top corner.
Half time four nil, and Greshams sought some shelter under a nearby tree, not that there was any point, the players already being completely saturated.
Half Time: Trinity 0 Greshams 4
With the game effectively won, only lack of concentration could cause Greshams problems but they came out for the second half fully focused and never gave Trinity any opportunity. The defence was well marshalled by Cookie and dealt comfortably with the limited threat from the Trinity front men, while Josh was alert and came out well to collect any through balls. The game was becoming more scrappy now as Trinity made a few changes, and the pitch, particularly in the Greshams goalmouth, became more and more unplayable. However, Greshams kept playing football and mid way through the half, added a fifth. Froudy sent over another perfect delivery from a corner and there was Neil Potter, ghosting in, to glance a fine header perfectly in to the top corner.
Shortly after it was 6, and a goal at last for Steve Burton. Froudy was once again the provider, getting to the bye line and picking out Burton in the box. With defenders in attendance, Steve still had work to do, but created himself space for a left foot shot, which, while not the strongest, was perfectly placed in the corner and just eluded the covering defender.
Greshams still weren't finished and scored a fine seventh to put some deserved gloss on the scoreline. A team move culminated in Cashen laying the ball back for Potter on the edge of the area. Potter, showing a fine touch for a big man, nonchalantly struck the ball with the outside of his right boot, to send the ball unerringly over the despairing dive of the keeper and in to the top of the net for a fine goal.
Full Time Trinity 0 Greshams 7
Man of the Match
Another fine performance from Greshams to make it three wins on the spin with 21 goals scored in the last 2 games. They accomplished it without a major contribution from their most creative player, Tom Cashen. Suffering more than most in the foul weather, Tom spent most of the second half chirruping in the ref's ear about how much time was left. He later confessed over dinner that it was "the coldest I've ever been".
The back four didn't have the most testing of games but did everything that was needed of them.
Candidates for man of the match are Froudy and Neil Potter. Froudy, with a goal and three assists, was also a constant and busy threat all game. Neil Potter however was the games surprise package. Having lost a few pounds, he now fits comfortably into the new extra large shirts, and on the pitch, the transformation from lumbering cart horse to sleek thoroughbred is complete. Neil picked up two fine goals and his presence in front of the back four gave the team great shape and balance.
However, Neil loses half a mark by virtue of an outrageous squeal and Suarez like collapse when challenged in the centre circle. Therefore the Man of the Match goes to Froudy, who continues to surprise with his ability to play football despite looking like he has literally just walked out of a night club. Well played.
I would also like to record particular thanks to Rob's mate whose name I don't know, for running the line for us in the most atrocious conditions. Many thanks.