Twas a gloomy Saturday morning as we ventured from the motherland far into hostile territory on our way to meet our opponents, Swansea A. The fun bus had to make a customary pit stop at Burger King to appease our ravenous centre back and after munching on a whopper in the services we were back on the road.
Upon arrival at the venue we were saddened to see that the Astro on which we had maintained an impeccable record last season was being relayed. Our attention turned to the second pitch and hopes somewhat dimmed.
Despite the rain the captain rallied his troops and we set off on our mission into the bleak coastal winds of the Gower. The game got off to a quick start with both sides exchanging attacks on each other’s defence’s. After some superb words from Mouse, our defence and midfield settled and took control of the game. Several fine attacks ensued with good opportunities being created. An interchange of play and some fine positioning saw Christian Elvidge play the ball to Tom Bryant in the D, who for the first time in the game managed to control the ball and slam it reverse stick past the Swansea goalkeeper to make the score 1-0.
Swansea upped the pressure well into the second half until, 10 minutes before the end, saw them convert a well worked play to make the score 1-1. Undeterred we pressed on until the end, firstly seeing James Ledger miss and open goal, followed by Tom Bryant at the back post and then, comically, Christian Elvidge kindly stopping the ball for the goalkeeper to clear.
Despite our efforts, 3 points looked lost as we approached the final 2 minutes still level at 1-1. A Swansea attack saw them dangerously enter the D and if it wasn’t for our glorious leader sacrificing his hand for us in a trademark, superman tackle, I may be finishing off with a very different ending. They say you are what you eat, and our other whopper of a defender received a green card for his efforts. Man down and Swansea hit us hard. A bit too hard in fact and they were soon down to 10 men too.
The umpires checked their watches, gave each other the nod and one began to raise his whistle to his mouth to blow for full time. In that split-second James Ledger had crossed over the line into the D and expertly placed the ball onto an opposition foot. Before the umpire could take a breath, his colleague blew for a penalty corner. A chance to seize glory. The team gathered round the D and Tom ‘The Redeemer’ Bryant took his place at the top. A slick injection, a crisp stop, a placed drag flick and a shaking net saw the match complete. 2-1 to Bristol & West.
Celebrations continued into the night and our promotion campaign continues into the season.
MOM: James Ledger
DOD: Tom Bryant
Scorers: T Bryant (FG) 26’, T Bryant (PC) 70’
Cards: Whopper Wilson (G)