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Home / 2005-06 Season / 2005-06 Results / Match Report

Westview Essex Senior League
Monday 2nd January 2006
AFC Hornchurch 1 - 0 Waltham Abbey
N Cowley 18' H/T 1-0
Att: 551

Match Highlights
AFC Hornchurch   Waltham Abbey
N Cowley - GOAL 18  
Longman - BOOKED 24  
N Cowley - BOOKED 27  
45+1 BOOKED - White
53 BOOKED - Burt
  57 BOOKED - Rutherford
  65 OFF - Rutherford
ON - Bostock
Longman - OFF
Hambley - ON
73 OFF - Hercules
ON - Underhill
  83 OFF - Burt
ON - Atyand
Heale - OFF
Burbridge - ON
  90+5 BOOKED - Forde

Match Report by Tony Middleton

Urchins went into the first match of 2006 without Danny Cowley and Paul Golby, whilst Steve King returned to the line up and Bradley Kite was given his first squad appearance in the Essex Senior League. With Abbey odds on favourites to win this match and to take the league, Urchins were given a boost with the news that Burnham Ramblers had only drawn at Rush Green, whilst Grays had lost at Canvey, this latter result being greeted with sympathetic applause as is usual when Grays fail to win.

An uncertain start from both teams, with an exchange of free kicks to start proceedings off – Luke Longman sent his free kick deep into the goalmouth where Tiffin moved in fast, but was thwarted by Burt, whilst Wesley Rutherford’s attempt was played far too long and the ball ran harmlessly out of play. Abbey then tried a move on the left, with Hercules racing through, the danger being amply covered by Thomas who guarded the ball out of play with Hercules unable to get his centre in. King conceded a free kick with a mistimed tackle on Elmes, and Hercules played the ball across the pitch to White, with Lee Sontag covering well. Urchins began to grow in confidence, despite being rank outsiders, and Holland gained possession from Bostock’s upfield kick, rounding Forde and then laying the ball inside to Tiffin, who rounded Marsh and then laid the ball out to Holland, when perhaps a shot was called for, and Holland sent the ball back goalwards, but wide of the post. Holland then raced clear in the inside left position, to be brought down by Marsh, who escaped any form of a card. Nicky Cowley curled in the free kick, King jumped for the header and Forde was in position to clear as the ball curved towards the net.

Abbey, the second best side to appear at the Stadium this season in the Essex Senior League, threatened on the left when Hercules sent a good through pass to Elmes, with Golby coming over to clear the danger. At this point the first of a largish Burnham contingent arrived, to help swell the crowd to an impressive 551, which included a rarity in this league, about ten away supporters. They arrived just in time to see King play a low almost on the ground header back to Collier, whose upfield kick found Nicky Cowley, which led to a Holland – Heale exchange of passes before Ayres broke up the move with a good interception. By now the Urchins were looking confident, and Holland won two corners in succession, the first of which Tiffin floated into the middle, with Burt doing well to keep out King’s header. Tiffin also took the second corner, but played it too short and the ball was cleared upfield, but only as far as NICKY COWLEY, whose first time drive went in off the post, to spark off prolonged celebrations both on and off the pitch.

Abbey came forward strongly, with Sontag and Bostock dealing with successive centres from the right. Bookings for Longman and Nicky Cowley followed quickly, though perhaps harshly, as free kicks became more frequent as did the appearance of both trainers on the field. At this point, latecomers were advised both of the Burnham score, and of the Grays score, the latter being repeated by popular request. A Longman free kick saw King again outjumping the defence to head the ball down to Danny Heale, whose hard first time drive screamed past Marsh but just a fraction too high. Then a Holland – Heale – Tiffin – Cowley move ended with Page playing the ball long upfield where Hercules took possession and won a corner which Power took, played the ball short, took the return pass and then cracked in a low shot which hit the side netting.

Longman to Holland but a poor cross was dealt with by Ayres, and it was then back to the other end, where a defensive slip let Holland run clear and his pass found Tiffin, whose lobbed shot landed agonisingly onto the roof of the net. Cowley, taking a pass from Golby, sent Holland away, and then only just failed to reach the low cross, with Forde getting there first. White headed away a Longman free kick, and then Abbey came back during stoppage time, forcing three corners in succession, all taken by Rutherford. Collier turned the first one over the bar, Collier again for the second, and Bostock then hammered the ball away as the half time whistle went.

Much to discuss at half time – would our errant floodlight ever work properly, had Grays got enough points to stay up, and if Abbey are the second best team to play here, then who could possibly be the best?

Urchins started well in the second half, Tiffin sending over a first time cross which Holland could not control in time to prevent Forde getting his tackle in. And then Abbey came back strongly, Burt making a long solo run on the right which ended when Collier came out smartly to gather at the edge of the area. Then Power powered through the middle, with Sontag and Thomas combining well to break up the danger. Abbey won a corner, and Marc Sontag headed over. Urchins regained some composure, Sontag finding space on the left, and making ground before turning the ball in to Holland, and then taking the return, and firing in a shot which Marsh tipped over, with Tiffin sending across an excellent corner which Marsh did well to catch under pressure from King and Heale. King then sent Holland streaking away, with Marsh coming out to save at his feet, which resulted in a four minute stoppage as both trainers were called on, with Marsh clearly feeling the effects of the collision. As the pace hotted up, Longman earned a long lecture from the referee, and since he was already on one yellow card, the last thing he needed was another one. Albert Bostock came on, which meant two sets of brothers, both on opposing sides, the prospect of four sets of brothers being thwarted by the suspension of Danny Cowley and the injury to Paul Golby.

Abbey nearly broke through on the left, the shot crashing against the bar, and the ball rebounding to Forde, whose follow up shot went sailing over the bar. But Urchins were soon back in command, Holland taking a pass from Tiffin and hitting in a good shot which Page blocked, with Cowley’s follow up shot rebounding off Forde, and then Burt completed the clearance. Holland, whose non stop running was causing Abbey all sorts of problems, chased a long clearance from Thomas, and he was able to touch the ball back to Cowley, whose shot was well saved by Marsh.

Back came the Abbey, with Collier holding on to a free kick from Power, under pressure. Thomas then sent Sontag through at the other end, with Ayres doing well to get back to tackle, and Cowley then played a neat pass out to Sontag, with Marsh saving the shot at full stretch to keep Abbey in the match. Then a Tiffin centre found Heale, whose header brought the save of the match from Marsh. Abbey came back, King conceded a free kick, and Rutherford hit the ball over the bar. Collier had a lot more to do than normal, but did not look under any undue pressure, and it was from a Collier upfield kick that Holland and Heale combined, to force Marsh to kick clear into the path of Cowley, whose shot was inches over. Hambley replaced Longman, and moved up to send a pass out to Sontag on the left. Lee’s cross reached Holland, who miskicked and the ball bobbed wide. A Thomas free kick saw Page head out for a corner, and Sontag took the kick, the ball dropping into a packed goalmouth, and running out to Burbridge, whose first time shot screamed over the bar. Hambley put the ball into the net, but the flag was up for an earlier infringement, but with most of the East Side already now convinced that the Urchins were home and dry, no one really worried – until Albert Bostock came up to meet a free kick and hit the ball over the bar in what was now a rare Abbey attack. In the eight minutes of stoppage time – and yes the referee did add on the correct amount of time – Urchins dominated, albeit a little nervously. Sontag set Burbridge up, and his run ended with a hard shot that hit the post and rebounded for a corner, which Tiffin sent over, and King’s header was well saved by Marsh. Marsh put himself under pressure with a mistimed clearance which Burbridge played back to Holland, whose shot was turned out for a corner. Tiffin put the ball into the goalmouth, and King headed wide, with Forde going into the book for arguing – the fourth Abbey booking of the day, though mainly for frustration rather than foul play. The match ended with Abbey again breaking clear and earning a corner, which Collier dealt with.

Three points, and another lucky win for Urchins – how many more lucky wins are needed before they are champions? Thirteen points clear, can they hang on? And if Abbey are the second best team to play at the Stadium, then who are the best? Urchins, of course.

Video Highlights by Rob Monger

- 18mins. Nicky Cowley scores a superb winner (780KB)


AFC Hornchurch
Michael Collier
Gareth Thomas
Lee Sontag
Glen Golby
Steve King
Jordan Bostock (c)
Greg Tiffin
Nicky Cowley
Billy Holland
Danny Heale
Luke Longman
Rikki Burbridge
Timmy Hambley
Craig Dennis
Charlie Bull
Bradley Kite
17 GK
Waltham Abbey
Adam Marsh
Nicky Burt
Dan Page
Dave Ayres
Wesley Forde
Luke Power
Lee White
Westley Rutherford
Marc Sontag
Harry Elmes
Tyrone Hercules
Albert Bostock
Ronnie Underhill
Danny Adams
Matthew Attyand
Tony Tillbrook

Man of the Match
Nominated by Ben Hetchin

Steve King

Weather Conditions:  Overcast and five degrees

Match Officials: Mark Bradshaw with Lee Dorling and Jeff Stanley

Match duration: First half 49mins 31secs. Second half 53mins 20secs.

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