Carterton Rangers v Kirtlington 06/02/2015
Match report by Jonny Dover
Saturday 6th February saw Rangers host high flying Kirtlington for the two team’s second encounter of the season, which saw Rangers getting all 3 point in the previous fixture in a thrilling 4-3 win. Strong winds and non-stop rain saw many fixtures postponed across the leagues, but after a late pitch inspection the ref saw Monahan Way playable. Game On!
The game started with Kirtlington seeing a bit more of possession, which was predicted as Rangers started the game with the strong winds against them, however Rangers looking to counter attack quickly when retaining the ball.
Kirtlington took the lead mid-way through the first half, the right winger putting a ball across the box, cleared by a Rangers defender but only to find Ryan Moran-Ross waiting at the edge of the box to slot home. 1-0 Kirtlington.
It didn't take long for the home side to reply, as from kick-off, some nice football released Billy 'Clarkey' Evans down the right wing who's on-point cross found skipper Jamie MacDonogh who finished sublimely putting his shot inches under the cross bar. 1-1.
A few more chances faired for both teams but the first half finished all square. Ranger’s gaffa James Barker was fairly happy with the lads first half efforts in the tough conditions and was convinced second half they'd see a lot more of the ball, which was correct.
The second half was basically a reverse of the first half, Rangers seeing more possession than Kirtlington, but Kirtlington looking threatening on the break. With non-stop rain falling all game, the pitch was becoming even more difficult for both teams to play football on the floor, but each team still battling hard for all 3 points.
With 15 minutes to go, skipper Jamie Macdonough, whipped his corner into the box, aided by the strong wind found the top right corner putting Rangers ahead 2-1.
Kirtlington now starting to throw the kitchen sink at Rangers to not leave without any points, were looking threatening on the attack, but some good defending by Rangers was making it hard for the visitors.
Rangers found themselves a few times with chances to put the game away, Adam Lee putting his header over the cross bar and a few one-on-ones, which credit to the Kirtlington keeper kept Rangers from increasing their lead.
Kirtlington were awarded a corner with 3 minutes to go after a sliced clearance by a centre back, Kirtlington sent everyone but the keeper to snatch something from the game. The corner found centre back Ross Grey wide open, who guided the ball towards goal, out of reach from goalkeeper Josh Bishop, to put the visitors level and scraping back a point. 2-2.
Rangers left devastated. The game finished 2-2 and was probably a fair result as neither team played great in the tough conditions. Rangers captain Jamie Macdonough picked up another man of the match performance. The draw saw Kirtlington go top of division 1 and Rangers go third, 5 points dropped in the last 2 games could haunt Rangers as they push for promotion in thrilling top half battle of division 1.