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So Near Yet So Far for M2

Stroud Men’s 2nd XI, sponsored by Ecotricity, saw promotion slip from their grasp over the weekend, despite a comprehensive victory over Wotton on Saturday.  Letting in an early goal could have spelt doom and gloom for Stroud, but they refused to panic and hit back through Craig Wathen to level the scores and effectively start from scratch once more.  The clinical Stroud machine began to click into gear and the team spread the ball around with conviction.  Looking for goals, goals and more goals, the visitors soon went ahead, Ben Orme providing a deft touch to beat the keeper.  Tim Norman stole the ball tenaciously inside the Wotton D, before reverse-stick shooting Stroud further ahead.  Tom Sharpe and Nick Hitchcroft pushed forward from midfield to provide extra fire-power and Stroud earned themselves several short corners, most of which narrowly escaped the Wotton goal.  Orme snatched a second to put them 4-1 at half time as Hitchcroft and Norman combined effectively down the right.

Ian Gill, Ben Drury and Matt Watts looked solid at the back, giving a forward-thinking Stroud a fine backdrop.  Ben Lilly looked sharp at right midfield and linked nicely with captain Rob Gleed, building attacks down the right flank.  Norman grabbed another, deflecting the ball past the keeper, then scrambled a loose ball over as a defender tried to dribble the ball away from his own goal line to complete a hat trick.  Orme got his hat trick shortly afterwards, before Wotton’s never-say-die approach got them another consolation goal from a penalty flick.  Rob Waite, stand-in goalkeeper, had very little to do, making a couple of saves all match.

With Lansdown A winning 4-1 and 6-2 over both days, Stroud missed out on promotion with their goal difference 3 worse than their rivals.  All in all, though, this was a tremendous season.  The team have entertained, competed, scored goals nad, above all, enjoyed themselves immensely.  A superb spirit, under Rob Gleed’s first season as captain, was a credit to the club and all players must feel very proud of the achievements.  Roll on next season and more of the same !

This entry was posted on 18 March 2013 at 09:14 and is filed under Mens 2XI | Match Reports. You can leave a response here.

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