Chiddingfold 2 Bookham 2 (League)
17th April 2005
‘At least it keeps us ahead of them …’
An absolutely crucial game against the side closest to us
in the league in terms of background and achievement. We had to at least draw to
stay ahead of them in the ‘new’ league table, following the split into
Premier and First Divisions.
We didn’t start well, almost gifting Bookham a goal in
the first minute – thankfully captain Jon Br was on hand with an amazing
clearance off the line. But soon the chaps got themselves together and Rupert
was unlucky to miss when one-on-one with the keeper, after Jon Bn had set
him up nicely. Jon was in good form and shortly afterwards cheekily nicked the
ball from the Bookham keeper and shot just wide.
Back at our end and Mike saved bravely at the feet of the
Bookham attack, but overall we were looking very strong, with Man
of the Match Eddie running everything in midfield.
First blood however went to Bookham, who went 1-0 up with a
terrific header from a corner on 20 minutes, but it wasn’t long before we
equalised – seemingly from nowhere Rupert battled into the area, stumbled from
a tackle (but to his enormous credit didn’t go down) and pushed the ball past
the keeper, 1-1.
Then the lead swung our way – Rupert broke clear again
and slotted the ball to his strike partner Jon Bn who made no mistake, 2-1,
Daryl at left
back was on fire, showing a great eye for the flight of the ball, and, whenever
we did put ourselves under pressure, Mike in goal was alert, at one point
brilliantly tipping over a crafty goalbound lob. Half-time.
The second half opened with a rare booking – the
opposition’s number 12 – and Bookham started to put the expected pressure on
us. The boys weren’t fazed though, and pushed back into the Bookham half, with
Eddie driving us forward. Rupert let fly a blinding shot which the Bookham
keeper saved brilliantly and then Jon Br was forced to come off after a
typically brave clash of heads.
Still we fought on, in spite of a couple of inexplicable
refereeing decisions, and then, with five minutes to go, we stood off a Bookham
attack, giving them way too much room to advance, and it was a frustrating 2-2.
With seconds to go, the boys got the ball in the net but the referee, probably quite rightly, blew up for a foul, and we had to settle for one point.