Elite 1 - 3 JJs
This Monday (weirdly) the Elite travelled to Wakefield Park to take on top of the table Island Bay and for the first time at this ground, the night was still and skies clear. Ganes burped out a week’s worth of lunch, Turk caught the bus and Greg mummified his ankle with tape (surely he must be playing? reffing? running?!), we were ready. The lads relished in the fact that we were playing on turf and warmed up professionally. Our opposition warmed up by pinging shots at the goal from 30 yards. We were quietly confident. These lads were top of the table for a reason however, and we knew we needed to be on top of our game to get a result.
And with that we were straight off the bat. Damo was breaking legs and Roger was flying up the flank as if his $450 jacket was blowing away. Despite Island Bay’s silky through balls we were dealing with it, and before long a scorching free kick from Angus nearly flew into the top corner (but I think it went out for a throw in the end). Before long we got the ball up to Clem who weaseled his way through the defence and earned a shot. Nik and Shane were working hard and at periods, we were playing our best football. Island Bay had some tricks up their sleeve however and would press us back at times. Angus went back to the ol’ misty slide tackle but caught more of me than the opposition. A few whiskey swings later and the Shane Long looking bloke from Island Bay had rattled one off the bar (pretty sure CJ had it covered anyway). Despite a few swoops under the lights, the defence was solid, we had outlets to attack from and he first half ends at 0-0 with the Elite looking solid.
Half time team talk highlights: Greg drops a few C bombs talking about the United game. Dec: “If we can keep them from scoring and stay in it for 90 minutes they’ll get frustrated and we’ve got a shot”. Ha, ha.
The second half begins and within about five minutes Island Bay pumped a fizzer into the box which Decs coolly poked beyond CJ at his near post. You read that correctly, an OG and $5. But we were still in it. Working it up the flanks to Shane, Turk and Nik was proving fruitful, the best chance falling to Shane who produced a great reactions save from the keeper.
But then drama, Ganesy gets turned at the edge of the box, and even a 6 foot leg stretched out couldn’t stop the curler from old mate nestling in the bottom right corner, 2-0 Island Bay.
Not long after this a corner to Island bay tested how CJ dealt with the low ball. Unfortunately, despite a palm from CJ who had otherwise been a brick wall, their header crept across the line and it was 3-0.
The Elite had reason to feel a bit hard done by at this scoreline and responded in the best way possible. A beauuuuuuutiful turn and pass from Nik set up Jay who fizzed it past their keeper and made it 3-1. We were still in it.
This was the catalyst for a momentum shift, and soon shots were falling to Jay, Clem and Turk. The Elite were fired up, Jay called someone a bitch, gangster! We just could not quite put it in the net no thanks to an impressive Island Bay shot stopper. The game ends 3-1 and we head to the pub where CJ tells us of the glory days (Wednesday night $15 deals at dream girls).
If we play like that every week well be back on the winners road in no time.
3 - Shane. Ran like the wind, was our most creative player and was unlucky not to score
2 - Damo. A force to be reckoned with at centre back, crushing tackles and winning everything
1 - Blake. Very solid at the back, got forward and was a passing outlet too.