At the beginning of the week, we thought we would have too many players but by the time Saturday came round we were down to 14. We were pleased to welcome some new players: Grace in goal, Honor as right half and Kenya as left wing.
Witney fielded a strong team with players like Wendy Rawlings and Jenni Howard that you might have expected to be playing higher.
Witney got two goals early on in the first half. Then we began to get our act together. Our forwards worked well together. Lottie was tireless on the wing with some lovely moves. Laura made a strong centre forward and was always in the right place. Liv coped well on the wing and worked well with the other players. Kenya had a great game as left wing, running very fast for balls that we thought were hopeless and connecting with them.
It was great that EJ could play despite a painful tooth, and she did some lovely attacking moves. Hsu was great on the inner line and put a lot of energy into her play. Megan, also playing inner, had a great game, coming to meet the ball and attacking back if she lost the ball.
At half time we discussed what we did well and what we could do better. We were delighted to have Linda Billington’s input as well.
At the start of the second half, Witney were awarded a penalty flick. However, they mishit the ball and Grace did not have anything to do. Shortly thereafter they got their third goal. However, we began to gel as a team and things were looking up. However, we still did not manage to score. Hannah Taylor as centre half always distributed the ball well. Niv, playing on the pitch for once, as left half carefully marked her player and fed the ball forwards well. Leo had a great game moving well on the ball. Honor, playing for us for the first time had a great game as right half. She was always up with the attack and then back to defend as well. Gill was, as usual, very solid in defence and cleared the ball well. Grace, in goal had an outstanding game, and without her the Witney score would have been much higher. She was calm and in control and would say “I got it!” as she stepped forward to clear the ball.
So, it was no surprise that Grace won player of the match with a resounding 60% of the votes for player of the match. However, it was a great team effort and the other nominees: Hannah, Liv and Deborah are to be commended.
It was a good team effort against a much stronger side than we played at the beginning of the season. Well played everyone.
Thanks to Linda Billington for the coaching, Andrew Plume for timekeeping and Fraser for taking some great photos in poor light.