We were excited to be back after a 2-week break. Thanks for all your understanding whilst Castlefield is being managed. Hopefully we don’t have to train away at Brighton or gift our opposition home games for too much longer, whilst the ground recovers.
So we played the main game at Princes Park in Caulfield for our big 1 v 2. This was going to be intense and see where the boys were at. Ajax have been beating the sides we’ve been beating, however by a larger margin. We had a cracking contest in the grading game with us winning after the siren. A huge 50 game congrats to the “smooth mover” in Freddie S. He already looks like he has time and space whenever he gets the ball and swings onto that trusty left boot. He was our captain for the day. I was a bit rained out so light on for notes.
We spoke before the game about doing the simple things well. Teamwork is much more important in these conditions where you just have to get in and around the contest and wrestle the ball forward. We wanted to show them that they were not going to intimidate us and that we needed to and wanted to be better.
The backline did everything right in the first quarter. Mikey P was getting good purchase on his kick outs. Harry BG was important and took some great saving marks and spoils in the game. Ryan P played his best game for the year and continued to put himself in when getting hit hard by the opposition. Sandro continued to not to be beaten in majority of his contests. Mitch R had his marking display and clearance kicking in full flight. Ollie E roamed the backline backing himself in to have us gain possession and head back into our forward line. I mention these six boys because three of them received awards and the support they gave each other was brilliant. We conceded 4 behinds for the first term because we pressured them into making errors.
The second term is where all the action happened. It was an error free on our part because we were cleaner with the football and more composed in front of goal. We played the game better. Keegan M was dominating possession and clearing the ball forward. Oscar M and Freddie S were dominating the half forward line. Harry W found himself in the right spot and marked on his chest. He kicked a goal. Charlton T missed a chance to mark the ball. Not to worry though. He picked up the ground ball and snapped truly for a goal. Harry B was beginning to have a great influence on the contest. Bang – he kicked a goal. Let’s talk about courage. Two acts epitomised the word. Maxey L copped one to the head and was a bit wobbly after it. He also had a bit of a sore wrist in the first quarter huddle. He led to space, marked and kicked truly for our 4th goal. Ben H gets downed cruelly right in front of the supporters. We all saw it. He was assisted from the ground by first aider Steve. Courage.
The second half featured Giddy Z and Huddy J not lying down and dominating as our ball winners. James H and Wes S both got dirty and contributed to holding Ajax at bay. Jake S and Ollie S were shutting them out and creating stoppage after stoppage. It’s all we need to keep them at bay. They ended with 1 goal and 9 behinds. We kick 4 straight.
I hope the message was received the right way after the game. We’re a great group and we’re also a better group. I’m sure we’ll see them again with more on the line than 4 points.
We play at Southern Road against St Bedes this week in what will be another cold and wet morning. That’s why we love it.
Go Hampton Rovers – best mates!