Bowdon IX's 1 - Runcorn 4
It was ironic that, having had eight fixtures against Runcorn last season & decided to go into a league to avoid such repetetiveness, our first league fixture should be against... Runcorn! It was, however, nice to get out onto the wet pitch at Bowdon, something we should be seeing a bit more of, from now on.
The game started well for the home side (us!) & we dominated the first twenty five minutes.Some good work up the two wings meant that we had numerous opportunities in the Runcorn dee, but we failed to convert these into anything meaningful... like goals . Runcorn began to get the measure of us & played more effectively giving themselves a couple of goals before the halftime whistle went. (Nice to have umpires provided!)
Bowdon started the second half strongly & Richard Cooper (now confirmed as the team's leading goal scorer & owner of largest SUV) put in a goal for us when he exploited some scrappy open play in front of the Runcorn keeper. The voluntary subbing that had gone on gave people a much needed breather on the sidelines, but played merry hell with the team's formation & it showed in the number of failed attacks that Bowdon tried to build. More opportunities were created in the Runcorn dee but we failed to convert any of them - in the meantime Runcorn earnt a series of short corners & converted a further couple to open up a three goal gap.
A combination of the laudable individual work rates that had seen the Bees dominate the first third of the game, & a (suspected) lack of pre-season training (mind you, this has hitherto been a sackable offence! ) took their toll & the last quarter was a firefighting effort as we repeatedly repelled the Runcorn offense. Individual Bowdon players from the midfield & forward line made several valiant attempts to pull the game back but ultimately a lack of bodies in their dee meant that there was little pressure on their keeper, who efficiently dealt with the one-on-one challenges that we presented him.
The final whistle went, & while it was disappointing to have lost our first ever league game, it was good to "put the band back together" & play with a couple of potential new team members (if you can refer to McLean as new! Heh! Heh! ). Our new keeper, Rick, can't complain of havning no practice, although it would be nicer if it took place in training! Hopefully he can look forward to some 'boring' matches in the next few games?
In the meantime we got our own back on Runcorn by making them eat the Bowdon Club teas (sorry chaps ), which put the 'hospital' in 'hospitable'...