Fouldsey is my hero
By Steve Arch
True heroes write match reports
This week, the Three's took on a younger (Probably half our average age), fitter (Probably twice as fit, you've all met some of us three's!), and strangely sober (They must have run out of money this year already), Southampton Uni team, who were awake and eager.
At the stupidly early pushback time of 11:30, we started by talking about how we needed to start strong, move the ball about and establish ourselves. However, in our normal way, less than 5 minutes later we were one-nill down, after their centre forward burst away from his marker (So I am told by a big birdie!), and slotted it through Purdy's legs into the back of the goal. Not the start we wanted, but it did have a consolidation, as Rich "Grim Reaper" Purdy had managed to fell their centre forward and best player, who, after a few minutes of moaning and groaning, departed the pitch, not to return.
From there, we began to take control. Alex "Chewbacca" Wookey ran the midfield, closing down and hassling their players, ably assisted by Nick "Glass too small" Hutton, and James "Not so" Young and Alex "Cough Sweet" Hall. We started moving the ball about well, creating space for each other, and running hard. The 1st goal back came from a good passing move, and a hard pass into the D by John "Can't turn the" Ship, which was deflected into the bottom corner by Mike "Two Hands, Fouldsy!" Foulds.
Back on level terms, and despite the Uni's shouts of "We're dominating this, let's keep taking it to them", we clearly had the upper hand, as a 2nd goal quickly followed, with another smart pass into the D, and a deflection by John Hump Free's taking it straight past their keeper.Then a 3rd, with a great reverse stick shot by Alex "Cough Sweet" Hall into the bottom corner.
Whilst this was happening, the defence of Ryan, Cotton, Le Pidge and Adey Richardson kept closing down the breaks which they tried to catch us out with, and didn't give them time to settle on the ball and use the skills they possessed. They were faster than us, but our defence and midfield just didn't allow them time to show their speed or skill, by not giving them room.
This led to frustration by the Uni players, with more and more stick tackles being thrown in, before 1 of them eventually received a green card for his troubles. We made the most of advantage by keeping them running and moving.
Finally, not long before the half time whistle, another deflection past the keeper from Hump Free to make it 4-1, to more shouts from the Unit of "We're dominating them!". They obviously didn't learn from his first one, as it was almost a carbon copy, and I guess none of them are studying English language, as the definition of the word dominate seemed to elude them.
They decided to change their keeper at half time, leading to them starting with a kicking back whilst they changed kit, despite us offering to wait until they were ready.
The 2nd Half was similar, with domination by the men in blue, showing them how attacking hockey is played, how to close players down and not allow them time, and scoring goals.
Although we continued to lead, and to play good hockey, the 2nd half wasn't quite as easy as the 1st half. They began to come back into the game and play better hockey, spreading the ball and making us work for it. We did manage to keep on top and playing good hockey, with our defence movin the ball round the back using Cotton and Pidgeon as pivots at the back, and with Ryan and Adey making space to move the ball forwards, it allowed us to extend our lead.
Firstly through a short corner, dragged out by Nick "Small Glass" Hutton, to the wrong side of Fouldsy, who was meant to be stopping, who did, but who then had no choice but to shift it further to the right before hitting it to the bottom corner and then from a great run by Cam "The Earl" Spencer, who dribbled in to the D and laid off to Fouldsy to slot to past the advancing kicking back, whilst shrugging off the intended foul of the Uni player ended up on the floor.
From this point, we controlled the game and kept the pressure up. We should have had a penalty flick after a jinking run from Cam into the D led to him running along the baseline and moving the ball inside before placing it on a Uni foot, but this was missed by both umpires, so we continued.
Near the end of the game, the final excitement was their player running into the D, passing both defenders and keepers before passing the ball across the D, which the umpires adjudged to have hit Adey's foot on the line, and a flick was given. Their keeper put the ball in the bottom left corner, despite Rich's repeated efforts and encouragement to get him to go right.
Final score, 6-2 and 3 well deserved points for us.
MOM was given to Wookey, for great running and creating opportunites in the centre of the park.
DOD was Hutton for bringing the smallest possible glasses for the post game beer, plus forgetting a non-alcoholic drink.