Report by Graham Harris
Godalming 1 (1) v (1) 2 Billingshurst
A really disappointing result for the lads when we really did need to bounce back.
Billingshurst threatened very little in the first half, in fact I had used the expression that the G’s were “comfortable” typically, just before the visitors equalised. In truth the home side should really have been more than just the one goal up during their dominance of the first half.
It was a surprisingly warm day with players taking on water at every opportunity.
The G’s were without Josh Witter, Matt Cox, Harry Dowell all unavailable, it seems, with Myles Davidson possibly still suffering from the head injury he suffered last week. Add to that that we had both Sam Taylor suspended, as we know, but also Sam Boultwood who apparently was pinged for his sin binnings. I did not realise that they counted. I must do better.
The G’s looked good virtually from the off and within 7 minutes Kurt Greenaway exploited a slip from a defender wide on the G’s left. He made it towards the touchline before crossing low into the box where Cameron was coming in at full speed and he deftly steered the ball wide of the advancing keeper, but the ball went agonisingly just past the far post.
There was a strong call from the G’s when the visiting keeper was caught outside of his area picking up the ball under pressure from the G’s. Strangely the ref was not sure what to do, but he must have had doubts in his mind, as he stopped the game to consult with his linesman. Amazingly the linesman was not convinced. It was pretty clear from where I was stood. But that seems to be the way it goes at the moment.
James Frudd repeatedly got the better of his markers and delivered crosses into the box with left foot and right foot. But the G’s could not capitalise on their possession.
Cameron then produced a magnificent shot from well outside the box that absolutely shook the crossbar. I was stood right behind it.
The G’s kept battering away at the visitors. Jahobi Maher was also getting the run of the right side. He delivered a great ball to the far post where James Frudd was poised, but could not squeeze the ball home. Shortly after, the visitors gave away a freekick on the right-hand side of their penalty area, which was delivered in beautifully for Captain Luke Beale to head home, finally putting the G’s 1-0 up with half time beckoning. A great relief to get that goal.
Then as the home side seemed to be coasting quite “comfortably” completely against the run of play Billingshurst broke down their right side and with a couple of good passes provided the opportunity to level the score, as it seemed that the home defence parted conveniently.
So, 1-1 at the break.
Early in the second half Cameron, alert as ever, pounced upon a bit of mishandling from the visiting keeper, but he managed to recover control with the help of one of his defenders to save face and deny Cameron.
Elijah Carter was booked for a lazy challenge and shortly after was replaced by a new name to me Reece Jackson who unfortunately did not last very long on the pitch.
Connor Young came on for Kurt Greenaway. Good to see him back in the squad. We need him back on form.
James Colinese also went into the ref’s book and it looked like the G’s were losing control. All looks a bit flat now. Maybe the heat was getting to them after the effort of the first half.
Captain Luke Beale made a superb covering tackle when the visitors broke quickly. But, from the ensuing corner there seemed to be some confusion in the home defence and Billingshurst bundled the ball home with Lucca Scanella ending up on the deck and needing treatment. So, now the visitors are 2-1 up.
Kurt Greenaway had worked hard up front and was replaced by George Masella who as usual brought some good skills and a good footballing brain to the game. A very promising youngster.
The G’s did mount some pressure towards the end, but there was to be no equaliser for them.
It was great to see the lads back in the clubhouse in the evening for the presentation of last year’s partial season awards. Sam Boultwood getting the supporters vote for Player of the Year. He has been tremendous and I think we missed him today. Luke Beale getting the Players Award. Very well deserved. The Managers Award going to James Colinese. Those two have been superb for us at the back. Also, young George Masella got the Young Player Award. A great prospect. Well done to all the lads. They were clearly upset about the result today and I am sure that things will get better again when Boults is back and a few of the others.
We have an exciting encounter next week against Badshot Lea, which will certainly be a tough one, but we have some talent that can bring about a few surprises, if we are on form.
Team:- Adrian Giles; Ethan Fishpool; Luke Beale; James Colinese; Jahobi Maher; James Frudd; Connor Blanchard; Elijah Carter (Reece Jackson) (George Masella) ; Lucca Scanella; Kurt Greenaway (Connor Young) and Cameron Edwin.
Subs unused:-Byron Watt and James Mariner.