Ladies 1 held to draw by Chiswick
South Divsion 3a
Banbury Ladies 1st – 4 v Chiswick Ladies 1st – 4
Banbury made the long journey into West London for their next league venture against Chiswick. Chiswick ladies are a tough outfit and previous games have been good contests, Chiswick were looking to close the gap in the league table that Banbury had gained and they started the game well.
Banbury were missing a couple of key players this week, including goalie Amy Cairns who was busy training with the National Squad. With no goalie to slot into the position it was left to defender Holly Firkins to step up to the plate and play in goal. It didn’t take long for Chiswick to break through and after some treacherous tackling in midfield and after a couple of near misses they managed to slot home the ball from close range to gain a one nil lead. Banbury were not going to be beaten that easily and fort back hard with some excellent build up play by Juliet Gardner and Becca Atkins. The breakthrough came from a superb ball through from midfield to Sadie Lapper, who after beating one defender pulled the ball across to Mae Welch on the penalty spot who coolly passed the ball to Tasha Nunneley to put away to equal the score.
Banbury continued to push hard and with some excellent control play by Sam Humpreys and some streaking runs down the left from debut performer Serena Goodhart, Banbury managed to get the ball to Lapper on the 23 metre line for her to beat the goalie from a strike at the top the circle. Banbury went into half time with a 2-1 lead.
Chiswick came out hard after the break and with the over reliance on two key players they managed to equalise the score by a lucky deflection in the D. The game was closely contested to the end, Banbury managed to sneak a third goal through a well worked short corner, which Lapper managed to flick into the net, but still Chiswick fort hard, Banbury struggle to maintain their levels of performance and with Juliet Gardner off the pitch seeking medical assistance for a bleeding thumb, Banbury conceded a third goal making the score even at 3-3. Chiswick were relentless in their attack and as much as Banbury tried to work the ball out of defence and make good tackles they were consistently penalised for bad tackles and breaking down play. The pressure soon got too much for the Banbury defence and they conceded the fourth goal from a well worked short corner.
With five minutes left to play Banbury knew they had to play hard for the draw, their efforts were rewarded with a penalty corner, which although didn’t go as planned, Vic Coombs managed to slot the ball in to get the equaliser. With only two minutes left to play, the girls tried hard to control the game but with some sloppy defending the girls gave away a penalty corner just before the final whistle. It was a tense time for the girls, but Holly Firkins made a great save and the girls had to be satisfied with the draw after a well fought battle.
Next week the girls face Wycombe at home to try and recoup their winning ways.