Chap Disappointed In Narrow Defeat
Impressive Display Falls Just Short After Taking The Battle To League Leaders
Top of the table Adel 4, beaten only once in 18 months, were always going to be a tough proposition. And so it proved.
Team news saw a defensive reshuffle with Typhoo, Moonpig and Shep all missing. Mad Max moved to left back with Gina G occupying the right side. Boss Hogg was back as a starter in the centre, with ‘Magic’ Mike Daniels, the best tackler in the 4s, providing cover from the bench. Flavio and Chuckle#2 returned in midfield with Hutch, Fitbit and Von Ryan whilst Gigolo and Iceburg continued in attack. Further cover on the bench was provided by Texas Ranger and Bambi.
The first half started with Chap looking like the league leaders. Mad Max, Von Ryan and Chuckle#2 appeared to have telepathic understanding as they regularly worked the ball down the left wing in neat triangles. Adel however are a strong defensive unit and Gigolo and Iceburg were not being easily found with the final ball. Chap did however force a number of penalty corners. Boss Hogg, Gigolo and Chuckle#2 all had good attempts, the experienced keeper ‘logging’ to stop the first two and the third going wide when Chap forwards agonisingly couldn’t get a deflecting touch on the shot cum cross to back post.
Adel were struggling to have any impact offensively mainly due to impressive displays by the defenders. Both Mad Max, Gina G and Magic Mike were making crucial interceptions at key times meaning Gandalf in goal was virtually a spectator for the first half. Towards the end of the first half Hutch was able to finally release Gigolo on one of his trademark drives down the left channel. With the defender beaten Gigolo advanced on the D only to be thwarted by the covering defender at the cost of a penalty corner. Unfortunately this once again came to nothing.
The second half started and Adel began to show their top of the league credentials with tactical changes. Recognising Chap’s success on the left a reshuffle blocked this outlet. Unfortunately Chap’s inexperience did not respond to this change and continued to try and force the ball down the left, with little success. Adel began to have more effective ball inside the Chap 23m line and Gandalf was called on to make a fine double save, first with his feet and then with a strong deflection over the bar. It wasn’t all one-way however and Iceburg, FitBit and Gigolo were all providing good forward runs into Adel territory.
As per the Worksop game two weeks earlier, Chap were to be undone by a penalty corner. On this occasion the initial effort was poor and the ball was pushed onto Boss Hogg’s foot. The Chap defence then committed the cardinal sin of stopping, waiting for the whistle. Meanwhile the Adel forward picked up the 1-2 from Boss Hogg’s foot and smashed the ball past Gandalf for 1-0.
Chap continued to battle until the end but lost a bit of positional composure against the experienced opposition. Further penalty corner strikes by Bambi were saved by the Adel keeper but Chap players could not get to the resulting follow ups in time.
The final whistle went and there was an audible gasp of relief from the Adel players. They admitted that this was one of the toughest and most enjoyable games they had played during their 18 month run. Chap came out of the game defeated but once again with their heads held high, if perhaps a little disappointed that their effort hadn’t yielded what would have been a deserved point.
The MOM Starblazer was a virtual landslide to Mad Max following an accomplished first full game at left back. DOD Hotdog went to Chuckle#2 for leaving the first aid kit pitchside before a very strange affair with a waste paper bin.