With the second match in the monthly series upon us, both sides fielded a changed line up with the introduction of Campbell for Certes, and Husband and Twinkle Toes Bradshaw for CTA.
For the opening 5 minutes the game had a similar feel as the series openers with end to end action and neither team asserting themselves or making the breakthrough. However, this did not last for long and some good work down the left from Moyston ending in him pulling the ball back to Thompson on the edge of the box to slot home past a helpless Shields, breaking the deadlock. This seemed to spur CTA in to action, with Patel and De Vere starting to link up well in the centre of the park and it was not long before CTA had equalised through De-Vere. With the wind in their sales, Twinkle Toes Bradshaw started to make some weaving runs through the heart of the Certes defence and never have you seen a big man throw so many drops of the shoulder and step overs, which ended him in neatly slotting the ball past Gibson in goal. As half time approached, Certes pressed for the equaliser but this left them exposed at the back and it was not long before Johal and De Vere found themselves in space in front of goal with Gibson proving impossible to beat. However, the ref awarded the first of the night’s 4 penalties for CTA, which De Vere slotted home sending Gibson the wrong way. Further goals from Husband and De-Vere before half time left Certes trailing 4-1 at the break.
After a quick regroup, CTA kicked off the second half and Certes quickly lessened the deficit to 4-2, before conceding a further three cheap penalties – two of which were converted by De Vere and Twinkle Toes Bradshaw. Despite saving one of the penalties, Gibson had had enough in goal and handed the reigns over to Moyston who spent the rest of the game between the sticks. Within minutes of being outfield Gibson had finished superbly at the near post, sending Shields the wrong way leaving CTA leading 6-3. At this point the extra sub that CTA had was starting to well and truly show and Twinkle Toes Brashaw took advantage of this and waltzed his way through the Certes defences with more of his silky step overs before finishing in the bottom corner past Moyston. At 7-3 Certes were left with no option other than all out attack, and with the CTA goal being peppered with shots from Lillicrapp and Thompson, Shields was called in to action several times in short succession before a breakaway goal from Husband made it 8-3 to CTA.
With tempers rising, Gibson who had made a positive impact earlier in the half went full “Monk” AKA Jason Statham in ‘Mean Machine’ and was sent off for an over-zealous challenge on De Vere. A man and 5 goals down, Tatenda calved through the CTA midfield and let fire with a rocket in the top corner which left Shields rooted to the floor wondering how the ball moved so quickly. 8-4 down with only a few minutes to play, Husband completed his hatrick joining De Vere and Twinkle Toes Bradshaw also on hatricks. The scoring was complete when Rolfe broke through a helpless Certes defence, making it 10-4 to CTA who now draw level in the 10 match series at 1-1.
Man of the match was without doubt Twinkle Toes Bradshaw, who was both a rock in the heart of the CTA defence, and a playmaker going forward contributing with three of his own goals and an assist.
CTA will no doubt take a huge confidence boost from this game and go in to next month’s game (May 5th) as favourites. With Coombs and Daley set to return for CTA, Shields will have a tough call on who will make the 7 man squad…..!!