As is always the way when playing Westbury at their home pitch, it was a frustratingly late evening slot (it seems that these days the University grab all the daylight ones). So under a black sky, floodlights and intermittent drizzle, B&W dominated the first quarter of the game with wave upon wave of attacks from every conceivable angle. Their keeper seemed unsteady and vulnerable and soon Mike Wingent had proved that point as he slotted in the opening goal.
Towards the second quarter it seemed Westbury found some players that had, for some reason, been hiding in their dugout. They proved to be difficult to manage and as a result they began to open up more space for themselves in midfield and the game became more of an even contest. However, despite them winning a series of short corners, the score remained 0-1 at half time.
Westbury started the second half confidently but what happened next stunned everyone. Nathan Patten, who in the opening game of the season was unable to run a few steps without collapsing onto his knees, ran the whole length of the pitch and into the D where he effortlessly and gracefully slid the ball into the goal past the flailing foot of the hapless Westbury keeper.
Despite Herculean efforts from the midfield and defence, Westbury started to exert some degree of control over the midfield and eventually scored. Another goal followed, with the game now entering a long period of delicate balance with the score at 2-2.
It was a shame that such a competitive and enjoyable game was settled with such a low quality shot in front of the Dan keeper. What can best be described as a scuffed push unfortunately unbalanced him to the extent that he was unable to fully connect and slowly, and agonisingly, the ball spun over the line.
Overall it was a high quality B&W performance with exceptional efforts in all areas of the pitch. The difference in the sides was probably one of average fitness and of course, the absence of our captain who was unfortunately on a drinking expedition in Manchester.
Based on this performance and despite a narrow defeat, it is clear that the 4s are going to be a force to be reckoned with in this league.
Author: Andy Bryce