OTFC IIIs v Old Thorntonians, Saturday 1 April 2017

The Old Tiffinians 3rd XI walked out on Saturday for their last home game of the season, we had a little following thanks to the club’s family day. Hoards of supporters, roaring us on in the Hampton heat.

Tiffs started slow, they could not keep the ball and within the first 15 minutes were 1 down. A free kick given away just outside the box and their forward curled it into the goal. It was a beauty, to be fair. That woke the slumbering Tiffs up and we started to keep the ball a bit better. Old Thorntonians still looked dangerous on the break, and could have been 2-0 up but for some great defending from Ciaran who managed to make a block on the line.

An attack started by the 3s, and we could have been level when young Dom was put through on the left. He struck his shot with venom… but it went over the bar. Again a nice  flowing passing move led to Baptiste playing a ‘delicious’ through ball to Bambi who struck, but just managed to tickle the bar and over it went.

The 3s went into the break undeservedly 1-0 down. A rousing teamtalk from Baptiste got the boys out after a swift half time break, ready for the second half. The 3s had a full fourteen compared to the opposition’s meagre eleven. And, with a dry pitch and the sun intermittently scorching the surface, we knew that fitness was going to be a key factor during the half.

The second half started, and again the Tiffs started well. However, some tired legs at the back led to a Thorntonians break away, which resulted in a seemingly unthreatening cross back for the forward to head in to make it 0-2.

Tiffs picked up the pace and had more of the ball. They were generating attack after attack, but couldn’t get the break through. Finally we got what we deserved. A freekick was floated in, which landed to Bambi in the box. He had a lot to do as he had his back to goal. He chested it down, swivelled and turned on the half volley and put it in the corner 1-2. Game on.

Tiffs continued to push on to get the game level and could have done so when Dom received a fine cross from the right. He was one on one with the keeper… but put it high and over the keeper (it was a bad pitch to be fair). There was a few attacks by Tiffs but we couldn’t get the break through and were unlucky to lose the game. Hopefully with last game of the season we can get our breakthough we deserve.

Congratulations to Ben Williams for winning MOTM with his well taken goal. Additional mentions go to Baptiste and Ed, who both had fine games, and Tom Rickman who had a fine debut in the centre of midfield. It was also great to see a Moodley father and son playing together, Ollie in defensive midfield (elegant as always), and Stephen “The Destroyer” in at left-back.

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