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The lads travelled away to Buckden in bright morning sunshine. We had a good turnout with 16 to choose from and even Dippy made it just in time - having returned from a late night drinking club run by the opposition centre back! We tried an experimental 3,5,2 formation with Jardine putting on the gloves for a good debut in goal and we had a strong squad. He was delighted to be the first name on the team sheet for the first time ever!
Sadly the formation did not really work and Clarky made a sensible decision to switch back to 4,4,2. For the second week running we failed to take the upper hand and Buckden were on top. After some good movement from our opponents they deservedly took the lead with a well-worked finish. It gave us a jolt and we did pick things up for the last 15 minutes with some sharper passing exchanges exchanged. Chris hit a couple of great strikes from the edge of the box which were well saved and Kev Anderson also came close after breaking the high-line in the opposition but again the keeper saved. There were some spells of good play but the possession was switching between both sides and Buckden also had a few good chances. Both keepers were performing well on the day and both were kept busy. Kev Hurst was having to really battle away with two physical forwards up top to keep them at bay. Thankfully Roy made a good run down the channel after being slipped in by Sedge and coolly dinked in a precision finish after coming out on top of a physical encounter. Unfortunately his strike partner Howard leapt to head the ball in field and landed awkwardly. We all thought it was a bad one and he had to go to hospital, with an ankle break a distinct possibility. Fortunately it was a severe ankle sprain and hopefully he can come back soon. Dippy came on and his roaming style was posing different questions for the Bucks. Clarky mixed it up at half time and every one got a game, Stu Smith had a great half at right back, Clarky was competitive at the back and they had some players on top form too with Piercey strong in their defence and a competitive midfield.
The game ebbed a flowed and chances came and went. Maybe we did not hit top form but credit to Buckden they made it difficult and Jard had to be quick off his line on a few occasions to snuff out a number of opportunities. Roy Essendoh also went off injured which restricted our forward options and Roy Shaw nearly followed after delivering a powerful flying head butt to the floor after a strong Buckden tackle. The Game was a strong even encounter and the honours finished level at 1-1. They were a good bunch of lads who competed in a determined fashion as well a string to play some flowing football. Kev Hurst was deservedly voted our man of the match. He had to really battle on the day, and he left the field with a few war wounds to show for his combative efforts but it was a strong resolute display. Hopefully we can hit top gear next week and return to our best form.