Romsey Mens 4s chalked up their first win if the season after a narrow defeat and draw from their first two matches in what has to be one of the strongest results to be predicted as the game started.
With Romsey’s Goalkeeper running 1/2 hour late and other players not able to make the start Romsey started with nine players and no GK!
Alton took advantage of the lack of a Keeper by firing in long passes in to the Romsey circle, but a couple of deflections went wide and a couple of penalty corners were defended brilliantly with Simeon Field running out and blocking, Pete OHara likewise and then Tom W cleaning up.
With Mike Pooley holding the ball up well with support from Ellison B, Romsey then won a penalty corner. A strong push out from Tom M to Colin Harwood saw the Alton defence rush out and a deft slip left was the executed for 1-0 by Tom W.
So the nine men were ahead, and they hold their lead with Duncan Sanders arriving late to bring them up to ten, and soon after a long ball played from Tom W through to the forwards was chased by Ellison B, and as the Alton keeper left it, it hit the post and Ellison reacting quickest to control the ball and make it 2-0.
Then with still only ten men on the pitch, Romsey pushed forward and Tom W played in Colin H who controlled the ball and pushed it past the keeper for an amazing 3-0 score line.
As Alton pushed for a goal Nick Cooper and Phil Orak made the left side of the pitch their own and with Tom M and Ellison B playing superbly in the centre and bringing in Simeon F, Romsey kept the ball until Lukasz Suleja arrived with his Kit to go in goal and Romsey finished the half 3-0 up and with 11 players.
In the second half the defence stood firm, Duncan S sweeping up and Lukasz S hitting away a couple of chances as Romsey held their lead, and then a long ball breakaway was touched on by Ellison B to Colin H to smash home for 4-0.
Despite an Alton consolation to make it 4-1 final score the rather tired Romsey team celebrated three points that seemed unlikely at push back
Not to be outdone the Men’s 4s have completed their own Toilet Roll Challenge!
In a tense clash at the bottom of the table it was Romsey who eventually ran out winners, but only just.
The game started well for Romsey, there was no rain, but Romsey had a Noah at right back just in case. He combined with Mike Pooley early on to set up Dan Blackman, but the final shooting chance was blocked.
Jim East at the back combined with Gordon F and Ben Butcher to first play in Ellison B down the left and then Freddie O, but again no final result.
Romsey took the lead from a penalty corner move, the ball went when outside the circle but was played back in and a half clearance fell to a Colin Harwood whose shot was going wide, and need Ben Butcher the corner taker to nudge it inside the post and over the line.
Butcher then had a shot wide but Romsey couldn’t add to their lead.
As the second half started Butcher played some passes from the back with Pete O’Hara and Gordon F before heading to the circle and calling for a player on the back post. His inch perfect cross was touched by Harwood and deflected in for 2 0.
Portsmouth upped their game, and pulled one back soon after with a good move that gave Ollie O no chance with a shot from the top of the circle, and now Romsey wobbled, Pete O saves them with a couple of fine tackles ably supported by Nick Cooper, but eventually pressure told and after a miracle save by Ollie O in goal, the equaliser came.
Gordon F stepped up, and duly won Man of the match for some great interceptions and Ollie O again saved the day as it looked like Romsey would crack, but with East and OHara solid, Romsey started to gain momentum back. Cameron Shepherd couldn’t quite make the most of an attacking move, Ellison B was tackled by the last defender before he could shoot and It looked like the game was heading for a draw.
That was until Romsey won a penalty comer with five minutes to go, Butcher pushed out to Gordon F, who cleverly drew the defenders before slipping the ball left for Harwood to score his second and the winner.
Men’s 4’s played league leaders Lavant on Saturday the 8th of Feb .
Push back was 4pm on pleasant winters afternoon.
Romsey had beaten Lavant in a thrilling 4-3 match away from home earlier in the season so hopes were high for another entertaining fixture!
Lavant started well moving the ball with pace and exploiting space in midfield , after a couple of close calls and solid defending from Rob Cav and Lukasz S they found their way through to open the scoring 1-0!
Romsey remained positive and started to move the ball better in midfield with Tom M , Freddie O and Ellison B using their speed to spread the play . This gave Colin H room on the right to make more attacking runs , one of which saw him enter the D and unleash a powerful hit which the keeper got a foot to but such was the power he could not stop it crossing the line for the equalsier! 1-1
Lavant responded well and Romsey were still being to tentative allowing the skillful Lavant attack to much time on the ball and soon this told with two quick goals which could of been 3 if it had not been a great save from Ollie O pushing the ball onto the post. 1-3
Disaster struck then as Romsey stalwart Lukasz S was forced off after pulling his calf. Romsey had to organise quick and Simeon F dropped back into defence to partner Nick C in the centre.
Romsey kept plugging away and Steve W was working hard up front ably supported by debutante Cameron S. The hard work paid off and Romsey won a short corner Simeon F came up to inject to Colin H who slipped in Tom M but he was closed down quickly so dropped the ball back to Simeon F who managed to squeeze a shot in from a tight angle 2-3!
It was end to end now with both teams going close Colin H almost pulled off a carbon copy of his first goal off but narrowly went wide. Unfortunately the Lavant number 20 who had been a thorn in the Romsey side danced through again to make it 2-4 at the break.
Romsey knew they could do better and after a good half time chat they came out a different team. They were far stronger on the ball and more solid with their passes and up front Steve W and Dan B was starting to influence the attack.
Lavant were still very dangerous but Romsey matched them in every department with great defending from Pete O , Nick C and Rob Cav keeping Romsey in the game.
Romsey’s pressure was starting to tell as the half wore on and Tom M and Ellsion B were working very hard D to D and in a 10 minute spell they both turned the match on its head. Ellison breaking from the half way line and setting Tom up to score and then grabbing one himself. 4-4!
Romsey still need to be alert as Lavant were still strong up front , Ollie O made a superb double save , coming off the line to smother the first then clear with the second.
Romsey held on well to claim a great draw which felt like a win!
Player of the match Ellison B – great goal and assist!😊
Men’s 4s celebrated the end of the year with a good win over Poole Dolphins 6-2.
After a tight first half which ended 3-2 and saw two good strikes from Morgan R and one from Sean R , a great team goal started by Phil O and ably assisted by Tom W.
However Romsey knew they had to step things up in the second half, and they did.
Solid in defence giving the midfielders and attackers more licence to roam soon paid dividends and the important 4th goal was scored Tom W with it to settle Romsey nerves.
Two more goals soon followed with a audacious lob over the keeper from Morgan R and a calm close range finish from Sean R.
Poole heads had gone down and Romsey fully deserved their win after a great second half team performance.
Man of the match – Phil O , a solid midfield performance!
Romsey Mens 4s played Trojans at home in the late push back at 4pm on Saturday the 30th of November.
The match started under floodlights and at about 5 degrees Celsius. Romsey started briskly and were quick to get the ball moving up the pitch, attackers Dan B and Mike P were using the full width of the pitch to good effect.
The space they were creating gave room for Gorden F, Tom W and Noah C to run into and put immediate pressure on the Trojans defence.
It was not long before the speed of attacks and pressure told, Tom W broke into the D and calmly slotted the ball home. 1-0!
Romsey still had to be assured at the back and a solid start from Nick C, Pete O, Simeon F and Lukasz S gave Romsey confidence to build from the defence.
Half way through the half Romsey were awarded a short corner and Noah C found Tom W with a strong Hit which Tom cleverly deflected past the Trojan keeper at close quarters giving him no chance.
Romsey were now starting to purr, great midfield inter play from Andy M, Phil O and Freddie O had Trojans at sixes and sevens. Debutante Ian A, now up front almost scored with the ball agonisingly stopped on the line by a Trojans player.
The 3rd goal soon came though , Nick C played the ball out from the 16 to Pete O who fed it down the line, Andy M picked it up and fed the ball over to Mike P who saw Dan B in the clear and slotted a well weighted pass to him and Dan did the rest with a cool finish in the corner 3-0! Great team goal!
Half time came with Romsey well on top. The second half started and after a few minutes you could see it was a tighter game and Trjoans had clearly had a stern team talk.
Romsey conceded ground and were having to defend far more and midfielders Rob Cav and Gordon F were having to drop back to help the defence. Ollie O was forced into a string of important saves but could not stop Trojans scoring twice inside ten minutes.
Trojans tails were up and Romsey were flustered. It took a few minutes for them to regain their composure and get back to the pass and move game which had been working so well. When they did they took their chance again with Trojans pushing for the equaliser a quick break saw Mike P at the edge of the D pick out a well timed run from Tom W who made no mistake for number 4 and his hatrick!
With only minutes left Trojans knew the game was up and Romsey finished the match worthy winners. 4-2
Man of Match – Ollie O – important second half saves.
Men’s 4th XI played Salisbury at home on Saturday the 16th of November on bright cold afternoon.
The first half was a tight affair with no team giving ground and both defences needing to be on their toes. There was the odd foray forward from Romsey which saw a great run from Harry M which took him from the half way line to the D before he was tackled by the last defender. Sean R also had a half chance .
Romsey’s defence was tight though and great work from Gordon F, Duncan S, Pete O and Nick C saw the teams go in 0-0 at halftime.
The second half started far more open and both sides were moving the ball well and Romsey’s midfield were starting to tick. Christian P , Rob N , Phil O were working hard and getting Romsey up the pitch.
Salisbury had pressure of their own though and even with more great defending from Gorden F and Pete O they could not stop a break into the D which saw Lukasz S come off his line and make a triple save!! before the 4th shot deflected off his stick and into the goal.
Romsey felt hard done by and continued to press , Barry H and Freddie O were working hard in midfield to release the ball forward and a great swivel from Freddie O nearly released Sean R.
Finally their persistence paid off and Mike P after a good call from Christian P fed a ball enabling Christian to dance past a couple of players on the back line before pulling back a ball for Sean R to calmly slot home past the diving keeper. 1-1
Both teams kept things tight for the last 10 mins and the game ended even stevens!
A fair result on reflection.
Man of the match – Gordon F Great defensive display.
Men’s 4s played Lavant, the league leaders, on Saturday the 26th of October on a fresh Autumnal morning in Chichester.
Push back was 10.30am and Lavant pounced on an early error by the Romsey defence this saw the Lavant centre forward and Captain clean through on goal, with no hesitation he struck crisply into the corner giving Ollie O no chance. 1-0!
This shook Romsey into shape and immediately they started to find space and move the ball down both flanks with Ben Parker and Rob Cavalier distributing well. Midfielders James Butson, Freddie O and Lorne T were working the ball well and getting good delivery into the D.
Lavant were still dangerous on the break and defenders Rob Cav and Lukasz made several great interceptions and a great last gasp tackle from Rob to deny Lavant a clear opportunity.
Romsey were still being positive in attack with midfielders Phil Orak and Mike Pooley backing up the forwards and on one such attack Mike Pooley slid the ball into Sean Rawles who controlled instantly and picked his spot 1-1!
Romsey grew in stature and were tough in the tackle and pressing the game giving Lavant no time on the ball. James Butson, Lorne T and Dan Blackman were terrorising the Lavant defence and great pull back found Rawles in space who shot well only to see the keeper make a great reaction save.
Finally the pressure told and and a great through ball from Lukasz Suleja found a great run from Rawles who took the ball under his spell into the D and hit a stinging shot into the corner, great finish! 2-1!
Halftime came and Romsey were in control and wanted to keep it that way but they had to work hard at the start of the second half as Lavant pressed higher up the pitch but good work in defence from Field, Parker and Suleja kept them at bay.
Romsey were still finding great width and Phil Orak and Lorne T were working well down the right, Lorne found himself in the D and finished smartly into the corner! 3-1!
There was still 15 minutes to go and Lavant were not finished yet and they had a succession of short corners ending with a shot on goal deflecting of a Romsey stick to make it 3-2. Romsey came again with great work from Rawles to force a short corner and in the Melee that followed he quickly reacted to strike the ball home 4-2!
With only minutes to go it was end to end stuff, Lavant were piling on the pressure Ollie O made a fantastic smothering save then got up to make a block. There was nothing he could though however to stop number 20 firing home after a great run. 4-3!
Two minutes to go the Lavant players started to loose discipline and were shouting at each other, Romsey remained Solid and pulled off a great win to get their season up and running.
Final score Romsey 4-3 Lavant
Men of the match – the whole team ! Great team effort
Honourable mention to hatrick man Sean Rawles- great finishing
Romsey mens 4s visited Hamble on Saturday the 5th of October on an overcast autumnal day.
PB was 10.30am and Romsey were blessed with an experienced midfield with Alexis Harris and Jim East controlling things early on.
After 10 mins things were pretty even and Romsey’s defence under the guidance of Lukasz Suleja was coping well and Rob Cav was linking well with Phil Orak who was having a strong start in midfield.
As the half wore on Ben H and Freddie O were working well on the wings getting the ball up to Sean Rawles and Carl Hendy who were finding good positions in the D.
Hamble remained strong however and started to apply a lot of pressure and despite great defending from Pete O’Hara , Nick Cooper and Mike Pooley shots were starting to rain down on the Romsey goal. This forced Ollie O into a string of great saves topped by one shot pushed over the bar with a fully out stretched stick, great reactions!
Hamble came again and the ball fell to their attacker just inside the D and as he wound up for a full hit, Mike Pooley lunged forward to the pitch of the ball and got his stick to it just as the attacker struck it forcing a wicked deflection causing the ball to rear up and strike him above the eye. Mike reeled back stunned but remained on his feet although needed first aid treatment straight away for a nasty cut. ( I am pleased to say after 3 stitches at Winchester hospital he is well)
The pressure finally told and just before half time Hamble scored 1-0!
The second half started well and Romsey were applying good pressure and moving the ball well through midfield with Ben and Alexis H working well to Find Barry H and Phil O who were working hard. On one attack the ball was pulled back to top D and Jim East latched on it and sent the keeper the wrong way and finished coolly 1-1!
This stunned Hamble who upped their game and surged forward forcing more good saves from Ollie O , however he could not keep them all out and Hamble scored two in quick succession 3-1!
Hamble continued their dominance and were moving the ball really well and scored again with a great shot which left Ollie unsighted. 4-1! Romsey weren’t done yet and a quick break from Alexis who found Sean in the D who slotted home calmly 4-2!
Unfortunately this was a false dawn and Hamble went on to score two more in the dying minutes to make the final 6-2.
Man of the match – Ollie O – great performance!