Club AZ 1 Mary Dendy 1
Last season runners up Club AZ had the shock of their lives as they trailed after only sixteen seconds to Mary Dendy at the Mulberry Sports Complex thanks to an opportunist strike from Luke Watkin . Dendy's Simon Lee swings a free kick into the penalty area In an excellent contest full of endeavour and great football Gareth Gibbons equalised on thirteen minutes sweeping home a Jon Blackburn cross after Dendy defender Lee Wilkinson got caught in two minds and was dispossessed with his back to goal . Both teams fought hard for the advantage with the speed and guile of Gibbons complementing strike partner Lee Anderson. Together they carved out the better chances with Gibbons forcing a marvellous flying save from Rob Tilley in the Dendy goal right on half time . Olly Gates - an impressive debut at right back for Club AZ For Dendy , Luke Watkin was busy down the left wing and Simon Lee kept Omar Lampety in check but with two commited sides there were always going to be chances for both sides , substitute Matt Stott screwed his shot wide when clear on goal for the visitors and with minutes remaining Club AZ contrived to miss the best chance of the game with Dendy defenders desperately trying to hack the ball away. A point a piece was a fair result.
Fine performance from the boys for Dendys first outing. The chairman Mutley O Neil & Veteran defender Chris Shepherd witnessed a very committed display which started before kick off with a punch up between 2 team mates. It definetley got the going though! The manager’s pre-match team talk went totally out of the window when after just 15 seconds Luke Watkin fired Dendy ahead with a sweet strike after good set up play from Matty Morris. It was to be outdone though with borderline refereeing giving club az a dodgy offside equaliser after 19 minutes. This was followed by some dominating goalkeeping from Dendys No.1 Rob Tilley who also pulled off a fine save.
The 2nd half saw dendy come of age & pushing the opposition back into their own half. Substitute Matthew Stott should have given Dendy the lead but screwed his shot wide but it could have been worse at the other end With a golden opportunity for Club AZ to win it but it was down to die hard Dendy defending why they didn’t. Fair result in the end and a decent start to the season against very good opposition.