Top communicator: S G
A foggy start at Mayhill, for the first home fixture in a number of weeks, and the pitch rather heavy especially given the Lions match played immediately prior. As KO loomed, the fog was lifting and the players were bouyant in the warm up for their cup tie against the Farnham Town Knights.
The essence of the pre-match team talk was for quick football, and good weight of passes as the ball was unlikely to run well on such a heavy pitch.
Captain for the match was S G. Over the course of the season he had demonstrated a fantastic work ethic, worked hard in training on the areas the manager had asked of him, and always wore a smile! He certainly deserved to take a turn as the captain.
The match started relatively even-sided but as time went on, the Knights began to asert themselves and showed what a very good football team they were. Dangerous on the break, quick to get back and swarm numbers around the ball, and strong all over the pitch. Little surprise they got the opening goal. Just too often, the Tigers were caught on the break with a number of good last-ditch defensive tackles from H M, D S and the ever-covering S G. One crunching (but very fair) tackle from H M had a noticebale lifting affect on the Tigers as more and more they showed they do have a physicality about them that they, all too often, don't bring to the match. That said, as the half progressed, the Tigers certainly created a few chances themselves and, if it were not for more passiveness in front of goal, could easily have gone in at the break with the advantage.
The second half saw a real battling set of Tigers. More good challenges, good footballing moves and good cover from the defence and midfield, saw Hook impressing their game on the visitors. It wasn't all one-way as Farnham constantly worked the counter-attacks and forced a number of fantastic blocks and smothers from the brave H M in goal. Eventually, with a second successive chance, from pressing the defence from a very short goal kick, B E managed to rob the defender of possession and fire past the 'keeper. 1-1.
With the match momentum (and significantly more time on the referee's watch than both the managers had), the Tigers looked for a winner. It didn't quite come but they could certainly walk off the pitch with heads held high.
Top communicator went to S G. Taking the captain's role to it's fullest, he was audible in encouraging and focussing his team mates from the start - something the manager wanted him to prove he could do!
MoM went to H M. A January addition to the match rota, he has fitted in very well, played consistent, simple football and taken his responsibilities well. Still gaining experience, but a great start in the Tigers family. What stood out today was his determination and drive in defence (note the very strong first half tackle) and a fantastically brave performance in goal in the second half.
Win, Lose or Draw, Tigers Roar!