Walking Football Results – 26/3/2023

The Hampton Walking Football team turned up at the Nene Valley Community Centre on the 26/03/2023 on an overcast day for our lunchtime game. We were ready for another set of league fixtures against Oakham United and the league leaders Glinton and Northborough.

The penultimate set of games for us this season looked a challenge. With a few players missing from the squad we would be moving players into new positions and crossing our fingers that they did not just wander around the pitch!

We kicked off the fixtures today with the game against Oakham United. And it started slowly with both sides struggling to move the ball over the half way line before being dispossessed. We started with our traditional 2-1-1 formation and struggled to move the ball forward quickly, struggled to move up the pitch and looked rather jaded. For once we looked our age!

We came in at half-time with a scoreline of 0 boring 0 however Mark ‘the bomber’ Ansell-Cook had hit the bottom of the right hand post having peppered the goal and the back fence with long range shots. So we discussed the situation at half-time and duly went out and found ourselves 1-0 down after one of the Oakham players broke away down the left hand side and blasted the ball into the top-right hand corner. I do believe this was their first shot of the game! Although we continued to struggle to play flowing football, the effort was there and through our determination not to lose the game, Andy ‘knocked Kneed’ Hovey scored one of his benders meaning we drew this game 1-1.

The standard bacon sandwich and cup of tea was now required. We discussed our poor showing together knowing that we now faced the league leaders Glinton who had beaten us 5-1 in the reverse fixture. Also Mark ‘I’m off’ Ansell-Crook could not play in this game due his youth team having another fixture that clashed. This left us with an inexperienced team of sorts, facing a task that looked difficult if our form did not improve.

So, we had nothing to lose and changed up our formation to a 1-2-1 approach and thought we would go for it. And it worked! We started well, moved the ball quickly, dominated possession, closed the opposition and created good chances. Then a deflected goal saw us go behind 1-0. However, after creating a half dozen good chances we continued to press and Richard ’Top Scorer’ Talby brought us back onto level terms. Both the Glinton keeper and Matthew ‘The Cat’ Bliszczak made brilliant saves which meant the game was exciting, yet tight.

We went into the second half playing this new brand of exciting football, playing on the front foot. And then we fell asleep at a free kick, just like our own grandads used to fall asleep whilst watching TV and found ourselves 2-1 down in the second half. This lapse of concentration was annoying and we knew we had been the better side throughout the game. So, we pushed once more and again Richard ‘I’m On Fire’ Talby scored from a deflected shot meaning we came from behind once more to draw the game 2-2. A fantastic result against the side that will win the league when it finishes on the 23/4/2023.

So we move onto our final games in April knowing that so far Tortoise Property, through the goals for charity sponsorship, have now contributed another £30 to the sponsorship pot bringing the total for the season to £330.

As watched by ‘????? not turning up for work ???????’ todays footballing correspondent standing by / in support of G Lineker.