2002-03 Results - January
Thursday 30th January
It's a funny old game. Prophecies of doom and gloom as the Vets made their way to Paddington Rec whilst London struggled in a snowstorm. Even a mile from the ground I was confidently assuring people it'd go ahead, only to find the astroturf at Paddington Rec under 3 inches of snow. Game off. Oops. Driving back, Hyde Park had no lying snow at all. That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it...........
Saturday 25th January
Parkfield 2 Accies 1sts 2 (Andy Voss, og).
Accies 2nds 6 (Alex Keast 3, Chris Dobson 2, Ned Carabine) Albanian 1.
Accies 3rds 4 (Scott Atkinson 2, Ben Goodier, Greg White) Polytechnic 2 (after extra time)..
Old Parmiterians l Accies 4ths 4 (Paul Bernard, Adam Mammon, Alex Parfitt, Simon Valentine).
Leyton County Old Boys 3 Accies 5ths 1 (Dino Antoniades).
Enfield Old Grammarians 0 (Danny McConnell) Accies 6ths 1 (Graham Whitworth).
Overall a good weekend. The 1sts once again pulled their regular trick of spurning chances and trailing with 15 minutes to go, and fought back superbly to seal a 2-2 draw away to Parkfield.
The 2nds, faced their toughest task of the season - league leaders and last season's nemesis, Albanian. How sweet revenge can be then, with the Accies winning 6-1 to really put themselves into the title mix. Alex Keast in his first start for the Accies notched a hat-trick, with Dobbo adding two more to keep the pressure on in the Golden Boot.
For the 3rds and 5ths, mixed fortunes in the AFA Cup quarter finals. In the Junior Cup the 3rds found themselves 2-0 down with 15 minutes to go, but fought back to equalise and take Polytechnic into extra time. From there, only one possible winner, and the 4-2 victory sees a semi final in three weeks. For the 5ths, disappointment - away to a surprisingly good Leyton County side they lost 3-1.
Cup quarter final for the 4ths as well, in the shape of the LOB Quarters, and a comfortable 4-1 win away to Old Parmiterians.
Finally the 6ths, and a day for the oldies. Chasing their third consecutive clean sheet the new "rotating centre half policy was unveiled". First half, with the slope and wind, Dom Sumners (marking a guy ten years his senior) and Adrian Haysome ensured few if any chances for Enfield Old Grammarians, and after an early howler from Graham Whitworth (sobering up, missing by a yard from six yards out is forgiveable, missing by six yards from a yard out isn't) he atoned to give the Accies a 1-0 lead at half time.
Half time saw all change at the back, with new daddy Duncan Bonfield and Skipper Rob (back from tarting around Oz for a month) taking over. Duncan's first act was an unintentional dummy on the edge of the area, but he atoned to clear the ball from the line after keeper McConnell (with assistance from the bog in the middle of the penalty area) had half stopped the shot. Watching the turtle attempting to scramble from said bog brought the words Hippo and Zambese swiftly to mind.
From there, 45 minutes of fairly consistent pressure. The Accies spurned a number of breakaway chances to stretch the lead (Chris Whyman step forward and hang your head) but the Accies held out, with a keeping performance later described as "almost looking professional". A far cry from Monday's mooning incident (when in a league not involving the Accies, following a little "time management" a bitter and twisted lawyer saw his team equalise, and promptly dropped his shorts and cacks and asked me to "time waste that you fat c##t"). It seemed a little harsh - I'm not a time waster!!
Saturday 18th January
Accies 1sts 0 Old Danes 1.
Old Tollingtonians 2 Accies 2nds 0.
Merton 2 Accies 3rds 4 (Scott Atkinson 2, Gio Martelli, Phil Sullivan).
Silhill 0 (Steve Woodrow) Accies 4ths 1 (Paul Bernard).
Accies 5ths 3 (Paolo Imbrauglio 2, Mark Hanlon) Ravenscroft Old Boys 4.
Old Buckwellians 0 (Danny McConnell) Accies 6ths 2 (Matt Glynn, Graham Whitworth).
The 1sts, 2nds and 5ths all had league games. They all lost. For security reasons it has been determined that details of these games should remain secret/best forgotten.
Meanwhile the cup juggernaut rolls on. The 3rds (away to Merton) and 4ths (second attempt, away to Silhill in Birmingham) faced last 16 games in the AFA Cups, and prevailed to take the club AFA record for the season to played 18, won 17. All sides except from the 1sts are now in the quarter finals, to be spread over the next three weeks.
For the 6ths, a quarter final already in the form of the LOB. The game, originally due away to Buckwellians was switched to Shenley, and in a hard fought game the Accies ran out deserved winners. Although Buckwellians started strongly, the Accies slowly built pressure and midway through the first half scored direct from a corner. Matt Glynn gets the credit, but much should also go to Duncan Bonfield who threw the key block on the keeper as it sailed over. Whether the keeper started flagging before or after Duncan mugged him remains a source of doubt, but the goal might be considered a trifle fortunate.
This rather woke up Buckwellians, who for the next thirty minutes had the better pressure. The game finally turned 15 minutes into the second half - Buckwellians broke through on a one-on-one, only to have the chance snuffed out. Quick distribution, slick movement and a quality finish from Graham Whitworth saw the ball in Buckwellians net just seconds later, and to all intents game over.
Saturday 11th January
Old Edmontonians 0 (Mark Dawson) Accies 2nds 7 (Chris Dobson 3, Matt Field 2, Mark McGuigan 2).
It rained for a fortnight, then froze, then snowed, then thawed and almost a full Saturday lost to the weather again. All Accies games off bar the 2nds, away to Edmontonians.
It's a funny game when a hat-trick doesn't get close to top of the memorable moments listing, but this was one of them. In order:
1. Mark Walker's superb clearing header, falling at the feet of a team mate ten yards away. Back of the head, running away from the ball, no idea it was in flight!
2. Mark Dawson's clearance from goal, slipping onto his arse and lying there, looking like he was waiting for the RSPCA to tow him back out to sea.
3. Dobbo's hat-trick, clinically taken with left foot, right foot and head.
4. Steve Hair's analysis of McGuigan stepping up to take the first penalty - "I'm not sure about this". Mark promptly buried it in the top right corner.
5. Scott Atkinson's run to get changed and try and bag a goal on realising Dobbo had passed him in the golden boot race. On Fewksey telling him "to play just behind the front two" Scott suggested "just ahead of the front two", or "why not take Dobbo off"?
In the meantime, the Accies ran out 7-0 winners. Early on the game looked tight, but on a treacherous, icy pitch Matt Field finally broke a dodgy off-side trap after thirty minutes and put the Accies ahead. By half time Edmontonians had conceded two penalties, cooly dispatched by McGuigan (henceforth requesting to be known as the "Dead Ball Specialist" though we aren't sure whether "Dead" referes to him or the ball) and that was that. Edomontonians gave up, and the second half turned into a procession. Good day's work........
Saturday 4th January
Accies 4ths 3 (Richard Favell, Andy Williams, Paul Bernard) Old Actonians 2.
Back from Christmas and the south east is underwater. Only the 4ths survived, playing a home game at Bank of England (Shenley being closed). A tighter game than it should have been, but the Accies ran out 3-2 winners.