Piranhas fought hard but could not seal victory at Oxford

Oxford 7’s – 0  Banbury Piranhas – 0

After winning the previous week away to Eastcote in a close fought 1-0 win spirits were high for the match against Oxford Men’s 7. With the prospect of missing out on the legendary skills of its captain Matt Allman due to a half marathon and with playing on the infamous bouncing castle that is Oxford’s pitch the Piranhas knew that the match would be a hard fought one.
Under the captaincy of the experienced Adrian Lamb and with Guy Heathcote having already wrapped up wet fish after forgetting his stick the first half began in earnest with both teams finding their composure for the match ahead.
The team quickly put Oxford under pressure with the combined efforts of the midfield and forwards playing great pass and move hockey showing a continuance of the performance from Eastcote. Oxford did not bow to the pressure however and started to attack the Piranha’s D. Their persistence was rewarded with a short corner after hitting a Banbury player’s foot.
The corner as well as the subsequent short corners was effectively defended by Adrian, Guy, Zach, Finley and the returning Phillip Smith. The 1st half continued with both sides making plays into the opponent’s penalty area but to no avail.
The 2nd half started much like the first with the younger Piranha side showing their superior fitness and youth compared to the opposition. With plays starting from Finley and Zack through to Jamal and Adam in the midfield Banbury started to play its dominant pass and move hockey again stretching the already tired Oxford further.
The play was mostly one sided with Banbury constantly putting pressure on the opposition D through hockey from Jacob, Harvey Sivell, Ali Nash and Jamie Marsh. There were several chances for Banbury to get on the score sheet in the second half with several attempts on goal but they were unable to convert their chances.
While at the other end the closest Oxford got to threatening a goal was when a bobbled ball was chased down by a forward before Smith came out of D to execute a perfectly time stick block. The closing minutes of the game were tense as Banbury still looked to take to the lead but still could not find the back of the net.
The match concluded 0-0 despite Banbury’s best efforts. However considering in the same game of the previous season the Piranhas lost 5-1 the side especially the younger players should congratulate themselves on a strong game. King Piranha was won by Jamal and Guy won wet fish unopposed. Next match in the campaign is against Newbury and Thatcham at Banbury where the team look to continue their promising performance for the rest of the season.

Ali Nash