Thursday, 22 December 2011

Aggregate win on Bardon Hill for Oadby Town

This pic was taken by 47 separate 'hoppers this evening. I suppose the stone throwing warning is needed when you are next to a massive quarry!

Hopperational details
Date & Venue
Wednesday 22 December 2011 at Bardon Close
Bardon Hill 0 Oadby Town 2
East Midlands Counties League (Step 6)
Venue #438 on the lifetime list
This match in one sentence
Oadby Town dominated but Bardon Hill’s good work in getting in level at the interval was undone by a 46th minute goal topped off by a very late penalty.
So what?
The impressive Oadby Town supporters will have been singing jolly songs all the way home – they are in 5th place, 12 points behind leaders Heanor Town, but, because of their cup runs, with four games in hand.  This is their first season in the league after their relegation from step 5.  Bardon Hill are securely in mid-table in what the programme calls a see-saw season.
Something random
A queue outside the turnstile 45 minutes before a step 6 fixture was a sure sign of a substantial hopping presence tonight as anxiety kicked in about the size of the programme print run.  In the words of one bemused local trying to get to the tea bar, “Where did this lot come from?”  Answers on a postcard.  An initial tea-flow crisis was soon solved and everyone was happy with their real mugs.  Love it.  The only sour note of the evening was the abuse handed out to a young lino – to be fair, his communication to the ref could have been more effective, but I don’t know where we are going collectively with behaviour towards officials in this game.
The drama unfolds
The Oadby Town supporters were in good voice from the start and fair play to them.  I think this is the first time I have heard such sustained singing for a step 6 fixture (and probably one of the biggest crowds for a league game too).  Their team took control but for much of the first half lacked the incisive final ball to break the deadlock.  Their #11, direct and pacy on the left wing, and their #2, a composed-beyond-his-years fullback, caught the eye.  My scene-setter clip is from about 15 minutes into the game.

Five minutes later, Bardon Hill were lucky when the ball fell somewhere for their keeper to drop on it after it had been pinging about in the area.  Then #2 cut inside and his left-foot cross was met with a flying header by #6 in one of the best moves of the half.  Nevertheless, Bardon Hill held on well enough with good work from all their defenders and they got to the interval on level terms.  0-0 at half-time

No doubt stirring words were spoken in both changing rooms during the break, and half of them came to nothing as Oadby Town took the lead straight after the restart.  Good work by #10 as he marauded into the area and reached the byline – he placed a pass back into space and #6, arriving like a steam train from midfield, really could not miss.  0-1

The game then settled into the same pattern – Oadby frequently looked like adding a second, but Bardon Hill got into opposition territory rather more and had several half-chances.  At this stage of the game, all three results were plausible.  Here’s a clip.

Oadby’s second goal did not come until stoppage time.  #10 burst through from half-way and shrugged off a first attempted foul well outside the area.  He was then brought down in the box, said both ref and lino, though this was disputed by all and sundry.  Captain and #8, who had been shooting wide from various angles and distances in the preceding quarter-hour, made no mistake from the spot, as shown in the final clip. Good penalty.  Final score 0-2

Oadby Town’s #10 who made both goals.
A snippet from the programme
It’s a good step 6 programme but, it has to be said, in need of some catapostrophic correction on the Sponsors list of all places.  There are three no-nonsense and commendably honest match reports, and this snippet refers to an away defeat at Thurnby Nirvana.

“Bardon’s see-saw season continued apace with a reversal of fortunes that all but rules them out of any chance of league honours this season.  The theme of the season was again repeated with numerous changes in personnel due to injury and lack of availability, and once again Bardon’s ability to ship soft goals was the order of the day … this defeat leaves the Bardon management with a lot of thinking to do.”
What I learned today
The ground is right next to a large quarry.  A quick look at the Aggregate Industries website inspired my post title and revealed that this is one of the biggest in the UK, here at the highest point in Leicestershire.  Nearby areas have been designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest and apparently there are about 200 species of spider in the vicinity.  Always good to read about spiders on the world-wide web, somehow it feels right.
What Next?
Not sure whether I can get anything else in before Boxing Day, though I notice that the Sussex Leagues have some action on Friday and Saturday.  Hmmmm.  My PROVISIONAL Boxing Day double (subject to weather, health, hangover, checking KO times etc etc) is in the mystic East with Norwich United v Kirkley & Pakefield (11.00am) followed by King’s Lynn v Holbeach (3.00pm).

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