JPCHC Mens 2s V Tynedale 2s (A)
By Guy Habershon
2s Fightback to Exceed Last Year’s Win Tally
Last Saturday, another young 2s side travelled up to Hexham to face an equally youthful Tynedale team. Jesmond had been frustrated last time out, with a galling 1-1 draw, but were determined to prevent a repeat occurrence. Unfortunately, we made the worst possible start, conceding a cheap goal after just a couple of minutes. A communicative error handed the ball to the opposition winger, who, breaking at pace, managed to slip the ball past ‘keeper Neil Tomlin. But this merely galvanised the ‘Yellow and Blue Army’. Tomlin was instrumental in rebutting shot after shot from the Tynedale forwards, who aimed to catch Jesmond on the counter. But we were controlling the game and, when the ball fell to Ben Irving on the edge of the D, he made no mistake, accurately pushing it into the bottom left-hand corner, just out of the goalie’s reach. We continued to grow into the game and, with Matt George pulling the strings in the midfield, and Phil Kelly working hard to break up the opposition play (despite the opinion of one of his teammates), Tynedale were forced to retreat further and further. However, Jesmond’s second goal came on the counter; a long ball forward found Nick Duffy, who incredibly smashed the ball into the back of the net with a reverse hit – surprising everybody, not just himself. Patrick Smeal enlivened proceedings with a cross-field ball that trickled across the muddy pitch, but once again Tomlin was equal to the effort that followed. Jesmond entered half time with the score 2-1 in the right direction.
Tynedale’s side was young and fast, but also inexperienced. Their eagerness to run in the first half paid dividends in the second period, as Jesmond’s passing style enabled us to play around the Tynedale press. With the home side tiring, more errors were made, one of which resulted in a short corner. Following the injection, the loose ball fell to Michael Witherwick, who calmly swept the ball onto the backboard. Now with a two-goal cushion, we were able to take things more slowly. A dejected Tynedale side now had their heads down, and struggled to maintain the pressure which had so troubled us in the first fifteen minutes. True, Guy Habershon had tried to comfort Patrick by repeating the same slow-pass routine; and Jason Loney had cleared off the line from a short corner (needlessly as it turned out, with the effort chalked off anyway by the umpire); but JPC were now firmly in control. Freddie Potier godinho’s hard running set up man-of-the-match Rory Restall more than once, with each time Restall mere inches from finding the back of the goal. But despite no change in the score, Jesmond were thoroughly pleased with the day’s events. We’d worked our socks off and won a deserved victory – to exceed last year’s total wins! Roll on Gateshead
By Will Green