Southern Amateur League vs Amateur Football Combination 2004
STEVE LANGLEY MEMORIAL TROPHY
AMATEUR LEAGUE 4
AMATEUR FOOTBALL COMBINATION 2
at Potters Bar Town FC on Wednesday
17th November 2004
BRACE SECURES WIN FOR SAL " (report courtesy of Del Saunders)
Over 200 spectators witnessed a thrilling encounter between these two fine sides. With several AFA rep players on view it was always going to be a tight game. The SAL forced two very early corners and nearly went in front within 5 minutes. A lovely through ball from James Roberts found Anthony Mann whose turn and first time shot only found the side netting. The hosts were rocked however after 8 minutes. A free kick was given away on the edge of the box and with the defence organising themselves, Jack Costello took advantage with a quick free kick into the top corner to give the AFC the lead.
SAL immediately responded and Mann and then Neil Hughes went close, both
shooting just wide of the mark. Oz Okkaya and Hughes, with very quick feet,
caused some anxious moments in the AFC backline. Okkaya almost equalised from 20
yards with a fine shot, which keeper James Holdsworth did well to tip over the
bar. From the corner a melee ensued and the ball was kicked off the line. With
most of the possession, an equaliser had to come from the SAL. On the 20 minute
mark, Hughes on the right hand side, cut inside to score a solo effort just
inside the near post. Hughes for the SAL and his counterpart Colin Hawkins were
both causing defensive problems at both ends.Just after the half hour mark Mann
went close again, the first following a great cross from Tom Tagg and almost
immediately a reverse pass from Hughes gave him another half chance but both
efforts were just off target. On 37 minutes the SAL were nearly punished again
when another free kick was awarded, taken quickly
again by Costello to Lee Reynolds but his effort was just wide of the
left hand post. Five minutes later Hawkins broke clear but was brought down 25
yards out. Free kick specialist Costello again took the kick and keeper Dan
Ashley did well to tip it over, seeing the ball late. From the resulting corner
the defence were at sixes and sevens and Ben Fox had an easy opportunity to stab
the ball home from close range to give the visitors a 2-1 lead. Within 30
seconds it was 2-2. From the kick off Hughes made space to drill home the
equaliser. First half goals were not finished for in added time Mann at last got
his deserved goal tapping home a rebound after a fine save from Holdsworth.
perhaps was expecting too much for the excitement to continue in the second half
although the wind seemed to increase which made it difficult for both sides.
Adrian Headley was thwarted at the last minute, following an early run, with the
keeper coming off his line at speed, diving at his feet. The SAL continued to
dominate possession and Mann headed over following another corner. After 56
minutes Neil Hurst hit the woodwork, having rounded the keeper, but finding the
angle too acute.
AFC then had a prolonged spell, holding the ball well. Reynolds on the left was
causing some consternation, twisting and turning at every opportunity. After 65
minutes Costello broke from just inside the SAL half but a final shot whistled
over the bar. 10 minutes later, John Sullivan substitiue keeper for the SAL did
well to save another Costello free kick from 25 yards, pushing the ball out for
a corner. Well into the last 10 minutes, Sullivan did well to hold a curler from
Reynolds and shortly after the AFC nearly found their way through following
another free kick. However, officially after 89 minutes, although there was a
few minuted added on, the spectators witnessed probably the best goal of the
game. The SAL attacked on the left and a cross field ball found Steve Forwell in
space who cracked an unstoppable shot into the top corner from 20 yards.
Duncan Elder finally blew for time with the SAL winners by 4 goals to 2.
the game, John Miller, Chairman of the SAL, thanked everyone for an enjoable
game on a very good pitch. On behalf of the FA he presented Chris Langford of
Winchmore Hill one of this years FA Workforce Volunteer Awards. He then
introduced several members of the Langley family and Wendy Langley then
presented the Trophy to the winning skipper Mark Grove. Jim Buttress, Chairman
of the AFC, duly responded and quite out of character admitted that the best
side had won on the day. The AFC Manager Stewart Minors then thanked their
sponsors for the game "Scholars of Aylesbury" and presented The Man of
the Match award to Neil Hughes. Lee Reynolds was then presented with the AFC
player of the match award. Finally AFC Representative ties were given to Lenny
Wapshott, Ben Fox and Jack Costello.
Referee: Duncan Elder. Assistant Referees: Peter Dace and Ian Andrews.
SOUTHERN AMATEUR LEAGUE: Dan
Ashley (Norsemen), James Roberts (South Bank Cuaco), Adrian Headley (Crouch End
Vampires), Ben Willis (Winchmore Hill), Mark Grove (Nottsborough), Oz Akkaya
(Old Wilsonians), Neil Hurst (Winchmore Hill), Tom Tagg (South Bank Cuaco),
Anthony Mann (Old Owens), Neil Hughes (Broomfield), Ben Penfold (Winchmore
Hill), Shaun Read (Alexandra Park), John Sullivan and Steve Forwell (Old Owens).
FOOTBALL COMBINATION: James Holdsworth (Old Hamptonians), Nick Haley (Latymer
Old Boys), Marco Tolani (Albanian), Brian Hanley, Lenny Wapshott and Jack
Costello (Old Meadonians), Lee Reynolds (Parkfield), Ben Fox and Colin Hawkins
(Old Meadonians), Wil Andrews (Old Isleworthians), Chris Glynn (Albanian). Steve
Bowring, Rupert Cope and Henry Turner (Old Meadonians), Stewart Minors (Old
Danes) and John O'Brien (Old Ignatians).