EAST LONDON 1 – 3 THURROCK I
Going into the winter break the Tees knew this was a must win game against a team who are always strong. With a depleted squad two players stepped up from the Seconds and with dogged determination earnt their spots.
The game started with both teams hitting each other on the counter attack with the Tee’s free flowing passing coming from Dan O’Shaughnessy, Ben Knowles, Sandeep Gahir and Andre Rudder feeding the front three of Matt Gaut, Christian Jenkins & Mike Murray.
All of the Tee’s goals came in the first half with Matt Gaut bagging two and Christian Jenkins one.
The second half started with the home side battering the Tee’s defence of Tommy Ing, Gary Ginsburgh and Nick Stapleton. The Tee’s took the pressure in their stride with some help from the Liam O’Keefe and Andy Sargeant.
The Tee’s gave away too many short corners and eventually the numbers showed and gave the home side some hope of getting back in the game with a well worked short corner.
The Tee’s held out to take the win, even with the home side pushing all out for the last 10 minutes, but everything that made it past the defence couldn’t get past the man of the match Andy Gaut in the Tee’s net.
THURROCK III 1 v 2 OLD LOUGHTONIANS ACADEMY
The timing of this game and lack of players in higher teams meant that Thurrock were forced to field a weakened team for this Div 8SE fixture. The visitors however did not experience similar problems and contained a number of very experienced players. From the start Loughts mounted a strong attack and went into the lead after 10 minutes from a reverse stick shot from the edge of the D which flew into the roof of the net leaving keeper Keith Mager rooted to the spot. Academy continued to dominate the play forcing the Thurrock defence to work hard to keep them at bay whilst up the front, the attackers saw very little of the ball.
Thurrock held fast until half time with centre-back Declan Salmon making some timely tackles to prevent further score. Loughtonians continued to pile on the pressure after the break and added to their score from a short corner. Thurrock eventually got onto the score sheet when Jimmy Venus intercepted a Loughtonians pass and moved quickly up the field before passing for Michael Fleming to score. This inspired Thurrock and they began to match the visitors with a series of attacks but were thwarted by the in-form Loughtonians keeper. In the last 10 minutes any further hope of Thurrock levelling score was reduced when they were reduced to 10 men due to the dismissal of Gary Venus for dissent.