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By Mark Paxton

The fourths headed to Ernest Bevin for the first match of the season against Mitcham 2. Our ball delivery man was a little late in arriving so our warm-up included lots of chat and a bit of 4-0 with an imaginary ball….

Mitcham started the game with only three boys so, with no one to mark, I was able to frolic around gleefully in defence for a few minutes until their final boy turned up. It was still 0-0 at that point but not for long – Cesca opened the scoring, but Mitcham quickly equalised. Pien then scored her first Nova goal, Mitcham equalised, Abbey scored, Mitcham equalised, Becky scored, Mitcham equalised, Andy scored, Mitcham equalised…spot the pattern? Then it was half-time – 5-5 the score.

Joe and Beth came on at half-time but the pattern continued. Pien scored a runner but Mitcham quickly equalised. There then followed a long period without any goals with defences on top. With under two minutes to go, Beth popped in a mid-range shot to put us back in front. Could we hang on? Cesca did better than that, scoring a runner that finished the match off.

So a very tight and enjoyable game. Some battling defence during the second half and the crucial late goals made the difference. This was the fourths’ first victory of 2016!

Team: Abbey (1) [sub: Beth (1)], Pien (2), Becky (1), Cesca (2), Pete, Andy (1) [sub: Joe], Matt, Mark