Sonning 1's 2 - 4 Witney 1's
Fast and Furious at the Doom bar Arena
Following a promising, if not frustrating, draw away to Oxford the prior week, Sonning took to the field at home against a Witney side who had been promoted into the league convincingly in 2016/17. Their reputation was that they would be physical, vocal and throw plenty of aerials, and so it was. From the off, the two sides went hard at each other, with pretty similar styles of play and at a very high tempo.
The first half would have been entertaining viewing for the impartial observer, but with both coaches probably having kittens on the sidelines as their teams traded attacks. Sonning broke the deadlock after around 10 minutes of play, with a quick sideline restart deep in the Witney half being quickly transferred through 3 Sonning sticks and placed clinically to the back post for Colm Hanlon to turn in for his second goal in as many games. However, this lead was quickly erased by a not entirely dissimilar goal at the other end just 1-2mins later. Sonning’s marking was at fault, and Witney took full advantage. 1-1.
Sonning retook the lead perhaps 10 minutes later with a broken down short corner routine finishing with a Sam Terry strike, tidily deflected in by Jimmy Manser in what has been his trademark in the last 3-4 seasons. Frustratingly however, following the same pattern as earlier, the lead was cancelled out within 2 minutes of the restart, and it finished 2-2 at the break.
The second half saw similar patterns, with an increasingly end-to-end nature of play, but it suited Witney better to play in this style and they went ahead for the first time early on in the half with a weak drag flick that Alasdair Allan will have been frustrated to see hit the net. This was compounded later when Sonning left themselves exposed, chasing an equaliser and found themselves 4-2 down. The turnaround was quick and felt harsh, but Witney had taken their chances, and put the onus on the home side to chase the game.
To their credit, Sonning knocked on the door for the remainder of the game, but as tempers frayed, both sides saw cards and the game became quite unstructured. Witney held on for the win, and Sonning will have been disappointed to finish the game with 10 men after an unsavoury incident that won’t be dwelled upon. Up next, Sonning travel to West Hampstead. #COTN
Goalscorers: Colm Hanlon, Jimmy Manser
MOTM: James Lockhart
DOTD: Callum Richardson
Card: N/A ?