Match Report -

Match Report - , by Roger Allen

Christchurch v Team Solent 03/11/18

Christchurch 1 Team Solent 2

CHRISTCHURCH and Team Solent met in a league encounter for the very first time at Hurn Bridge. Solent’s team showed two changes as, yet again, they had keeper unavailability and manager Jimmy (The Cat) Taylor stood in between the sticks. Sam Hartley, a third-year student, made his Wessex debut in defence. Both sides are located at the lower end of the table, but Church would be buoyed from collecting four points from their last two outings. The assembly observed a minute’s pre-match silence to remember those killed in conflict and for those who died in the Leicester helicopter crash a week ago.

The Cat was called on to make a low save from Wilcock but the goals soon came, all three being scored in an eleven minute spell. Solent netted first when skipper Penny took a left-wing corner, Hartley got up to head down and back towards the near post where BALDWIN applied the touch across the line. The Priory side swiftly replied though, as a further minute had barely elapsed when a harmless looking ball had come in from the left and KIRKHAM stretched out his leg to guide the ball goalwards and it trickled low and back into the near corner. Solent full-back Wallace was appearing in his 50th match for the team but he limped off with a toe injury with less than twenty minutes played, Bennett being introduced from the bench.

Undeterred by these setbacks, Solent retook the lead when Penny’s delightful chipped ball sent Ethan TAYLOR behind the home defensive line and he nicked it past the advancing keeper and was left with a gaping goal to duly do the needful. The home side tried to hit back but Cormack’s shot from the left struck the far angle and Wright’s follow up effort was pounced on by The Cat. Solent’s Obeng also left the field with an injury before the interval, Koroma went on. HT 1-2

Church, attacking the car park end in the second half, looked to level with Walker heading the ball before The Cat and it came off the bar. Kasimu latched onto a ball over the top of the home defence but, with the keeper to beat, his shot rebounded back off King’s legs. It was Solent’s turn to hit the goalframe next as Ethan Taylor’s free-kick from the right picked out Hartley whose header hit the bar, thus denying him a debut goal. Church got a bit irritated from a throw in decision which resulted in the third of their five yellow cards and it appeared that one of their coaching staff was sent from the dugout too.

Cormack made a good run through the inside-left channel and his shot missed the far post, the claim of a Solent player getting the final touch being dismissed by the referee. Mitchell fired narrowly over for the visitors but a tremendous block by Baldwin kept his side in front during stoppage time, denying Wilcock’s attempted shot. FT 1-2

This was a much-needed win for Solent (only their second in 13 league games) and, to a man, they worked hard to achieve it. A similar work ethic will be needed in the weeks to come if they are to get clear from the gravitational pull of the Premier Division danger zone. (Gary Day)