Fisher 3 v 4 Aveley
Date posted: 22-07-2012
BY SCOTT HATLEY
AVELEY make it two wins from two after beating Fisher 4-3 in a seven goal thriller in a somewhat feisty affair at Bacon’s College, Bermondsey.
A brace from Shane Oakley, an own goal, plus a second of the season for man of the match, Ricky Edwards, was enough to see the Millers past their Kent Premier League opponents.
Fisher FC – who were formerly Fisher Athletic until the club went into liquidation in 2009 – use their pre-season matches as a chance to take the club back to their roots, dubbing it the ‘Rotherhithe Series’.
The match was Aveley’s second pre-season game of the campaign, and their second to be played on a 3G pitch, with the match being held at Bacon’s College which is just a stones-throw away from Fisher’s old ground, the Surrey Docks Stadium.
Fisher had already played four pre-season matches prior to today’s encounter, and their match sharpness showed as they dominated the early exchanges. Playing with an extra man in the midfield, Fisher were looking by far the more dangerous of the two sides, but Justin Gardner’s men held their line well, not allowing the home side to make any clear-cut chances.
It was Aveley, though, who took the lead and completely against the run of play through Oakley’s first, with a move that was started and finished by the Aveley number nine.
Oakley won the ball after going in strongest into a 50/50 tackle with one of the Fisher midfielders. The ball fell kindly for Oakley who played inside to number 10, Michael Begg who took one touch to control the ball before playing the ball back into the path of Oakley who had continued his run. Oakley then calmly slotted the ball past the goalkeeper and into the bottom corner to make it 1-0 after nine minutes.
Normal service resumed after the goal with Fisher once again having the majority of the possession, but still creating very little to worry the away side.
However, with 20 minutes gone the game sparked into life in an eventful 10 minute spell which saw two goals and a brawl.
Firstly, following a late challenge on Oakley, Edwards and Fisher’s Rob Depeazer, had to be pulled apart by players and officials after Edwards took a disliking to the challenge which had come after the referee had already blown for a foul. The referee, J. Horn, managed to diffuse the situation and spoke to both players before deciding no further action was necessary, with neither player going into the book.
Two minutes later, Fisher equalised, through a brilliant free kick from Adam Wadmore. The free kick was given after Aveley captain, Jay Leader, had caught Depeazer from behind as he was striding towards goal. Just slightly to the left of centre, Wadmore stepped up and curled a beauty of a free kick right into the top corner which Aveley ‘keeper, Dave McCartney stood no chance of saving.
Wadmore almost bagged another, again from a free kick four minutes later. This time off to the right, Wadmore’s strike went straight through the two man wall that parted too easily. The shot looked to everyone watching like it was going to nestle in the bottom corner before McCartney sprung to his left pulling off a top save to palm it round the post and away for a corner.
On the half hour mark, Aveley retook the lead, once again through Oakley who bagged his second of the game, with more than a hint of fortune in the build-up.
With the ball pin-balling around in the centre circle, Edwards came out best in a 50/50 challenge, but his challenge inadvertently turned into a perfect through ball into the path of Oakley. With just the goalkeeper to beat, Oakley rounded the goalkeeper with ease with his first touch before placing the ball into the bottom corner with his second to give Aveley the lead once more.
Oakley’s half wasn’t over there, though, as he also managed to get himself booked right on the stroke of half time. Oakley, deep in the Fisher half was tussling for the ball with Fisher’s Frankie Warren. The referee had pulled the play up for a foul by Oakley but the pair then squared up to each other, again having to be separated by players and officials, and this time referee Horn decided both would get a yellow for their troubles.
Gardner made a raft of changes in the second half to give some more of his squad some precious pre-season minutes, but it wasn’t long into the second half before Fisher found themselves level again thanks to a moment of brilliance.
With five minutes of the second half played, Damien Remsami hit a rather hopeful cross-shot which bobbled towards Leader who cleared, but the clearance fell to the onrushing Zack Henry who had gotten in front of his man to win the ball. Henry’s first touch wasn’t the best with the ball popping up into the air, but it had sat up nicely for Henry to strike a perfect volley from just outside the penalty area, looping over the Aveley keeper and in to make it 2-2. Jason Willis – who had come on for Aveley in the second half – could only stand there and watch as the ball flew past him.
Just past the hour mark Aveley retook the lead again thanks to an own goal from Fisher’s Greg Wickenden. Paul Bennet had the ball wide on the left hand side after being played in by Edwards, and with Gardner screaming at him to put a cross in Bennet found enough space to whip the ball into the area. His cross evaded everyone in an attacking position, but in a moment of madness, Wickenden was caught in two minds over whether to control the ball or play it back to the keeper and ended up achieving neither as he managed to play the ball back where the goalie had come from and into the back of his own net after 62 minutes.
Aveley’s has no time to enjoy their lead however, as less than a minute later Fisher were back level through their number 14, Griffiths. After being played in from the left, Griffiths managed to ride one challenge before wriggling away from another two Aveley challenges to calmly place the ball into the bottom corner from around eight yards out to the annoyance of manager, Gardner.
With the match finely poised and with 20 minutes still to play in what had been a pulsating game of football, Aveley took the lead for the fourth time with the goal that would eventually prove to be the winner.
Fisher had a corner from the right hand side, but the delivery failed to beat the first man and was cleared. The ball fell wide to another Fisher player, but with Junior Appiah and Tom Querry applying the pressure they managed to win the ball and break on the counter attack. Querry played an early pass into Daniel Buglione who then played a perfectly weighted, slide-rule pass between the two defenders and into the feet of Edwards who held his run to perfection. Edwards took one touch to set himself onto his left foot and had the composure to finish across the advancing ‘keeper to finally win the game for the away side.
Despite his match winning goal and man of the match performance, Edwards said after the game that “(I’m happy) with the goal, with the performance I was below par. As I get fitter my head gets up a bit more and I’ll be able to look. I gave the one before that away so I was happy to get the one at the end and make amends.” Speaking about the team performance as a whole, Edwards said “it was a good performance, we stuck in there, worked hard and were clinical – we took our chances. We’re getting fitter, but there is still a long way to go.”
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