St. Neot Record Their First Win

They say that you should never begin a match report with a description of the weather, but how could you not, when the only adjective you could use to describe it was ‘brutal’?

Brutal conditions for the game (Photo by Darren Kelsall)

The whole game was played in ‘brutal’ conditions, that wouldn’t be out of place in a post-apocalyptic movie plot.

A very real risk of drowning whilst stood up, existed for both player and supporter. Irrespective of how many waterproof layers you had on or how much scuba gear you brought, it still got into every crevice, opening and unzipped pocket… and beyond.

But despite the nonsense that was the weather, a good crowd of over 20 people witnessed an amazing game of football.

Amazing from the St. Neot point of view, that after only five weeks in existence, a St. Neot team graced a football field for a competitive match, the first time in over 6 years that men from the village had pulled on the jersey and run out for the Saints. And amazing from a Tudy point of view that after almost a year with no football, they finally were playing a competitive game again.

The game started off brightly for St. Tudy, who with very youthful exuberance, had some nice passages of play, but resolute defending and good communication in the Neot back four, prevented Tudy creating any real chances throughout the first half.

Corner whipped in by St Neot No. 7 Arran Graham
(Photo by Darren Kelsall)

Some nice wing play and good control in midfield from the experienced Jones and Eldridge, created some nice spells for Neot, but only half chances and scuffed shots were the result for the Blue Saints.

The Second half started much as the first had finished; with horrific weather and all 22 players slugging their guts out to snatch something, maybe punish a mistake by an opponent, but the concentration levels were high from both sides.

As legs began to tire, small errors began to creep in for both sides. St Tudy’s No.19 was sin binned for a blatant handball (more a punch in mid air) but St. Neot couldn’t capitalise.

Three minutes from time, St. Neot won a free kick just outside the box. Deftly whipped in, the Tudy keeper made a number of fine stops, but couldn’t hold onto the ball, each time a St. Neot player got to it struck it and they would be thwarted, first by the crossbar and then by some resolute defending. But finally after a painfully long game of ‘pinball’, Neot no. 4 Neil Davy smashed the ball in to the back of the net.

The dying moments of the game saw Tudy push forwards; making the Neot defenders dig deep to prevent the pace of Tudy overwhelming them.

Under the floodlights at Callywith 3G (Photo by Darren Kelsall)

In the end, and despite the many challenges the game faced, St. Neot ran out winners. On reflection, it was a fair result, due in large part to the brutality of the wind and rain, that quite clearly affected the ball on the 3g surface and the corresponding quality of play from both teams.

(N.B. A special mention must be given to a ground hopper from Lancashire who, despite staying in Plymouth on holiday, made the journey to watch the game and stayed for the entire match. Mr Kelsall we salute you and thank you for the photos!)


St. Neot Starting line-up:

1 Toby Chapman, 17 Adam Blaxley, 5 Ray Clarke, 4 Neil Davy, 15 Henry German, 6 Jamie Eldridge, 3 Nathan Berry, 9 Liam Jones, 10 Scott Kemp, 8 Oliver Lees, 7 Arran Graham

Substitutes:

11 Asher Rockey, 16 Will Fieldhouse, 12 Oliver Durneen, 14 Richard Banyard


Goal Scorer and MoM for St. Neot: Neil Davy

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