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Baker Provides Beacon of Hope
Bracknell Manics kicked
off their 2005-2006 Berks & Bucks campaign this weekend. After last
seasons attitude towards the cup, BMFC aimed for more this season in the
Berks & Bucks Cup. The opposition..? A resilient Southcote Video FC.
Apart from a verbal No. 4, the rest of the team wanted to play football,
which made it very difficult for the Manics to settle into their own game.
Southcote had the first chance of the game; Mark Gates' last ditch challenge
missed and SV's no10 broke through on goal only for James Robinson to
make a great save in goal, tipping the ball wide for a corner.
Simon Blay, back in the frame, could have put the Manics ahead when a
free header was off target. Next minutes later Glenn Evans also had a
chance after he linked well with Gary Sarney out on the right his shot
bending away from goal.
But Manics found themselves 1-0 down by the end of the first half when
the Manics midfield lost the ball to SV's No. 4 who played the ball forward
and this time Robinson could do nothing to save it.
No less than a minute later and SV made the same move to hit the bar which
was a little unsettling for the Manics to say the least after playing
not such a bad half of football.
Half time entertainment included some squaring up from both sides, but
it was quickly dealt with. Skipper Glenn Evans got straight to the heart
of it, pulling away Manic shirts and at the same time sporting his black
eye to SV as an example to the last man twice his size to call him out
for a scuffle. At the same time Elliott Fairs sporting attitude beamed
like a bright torch - warning the Manics of the consequences they could
face if it got any hotter under the collar.
So Manics finished the half a bit downhearted, but they knew if they got
one back they could go on to win - right? Well, 10 minutes into the 2nd
half and Manics went another goal down as SV made it 2-0.
SV had two more chances in quick succession - one over the bar and another
of the post, as Manics seemed to be clinging desperately to hold on in
Then a chance, Simon Blay's hard work in up front - first with a well
placed shot saved and next a piece of good attacking in the box, brought
down and awarded a penalty. David Fenton stepped up to take, but the SV
keeper made a great save to keep them in the game.
Nikos Patsalides made changes soon after, both Simon Blay and Barry O'Connell
would come off; Gary Sarney pushed on up front, and off the bench, Tim
Roake and Alan Matthias would come on to fill the gaps in the side.
Four minutes later and Manics finally got the goal they were looking for.
Gavin Baker opened his account, in front
of goal, placing the ball after Gary Sarney did well to tee him up for
SV looked unstable all of a sudden, holes were appearing in their defence.
Soon Alan Matthias took the Manics level
in a similar scenario, Matthias doing well to turn a defender before beating
the keeper to make it 2-2.
Manics thought they had it sealed just two minutes later when Baker
scored his second and took the Manics into the lead, this time Matthias
supplying the assist; but then disaster struck when an SV throw was deflected
and then bicycle kicked past Robinson and into the net to make it 3-3
taking the game to extra time.
The start of the first period of half time saw Manics come out fighting,
and good spell of pressure and SV on the back foot.
But just as the fans thought the game would go to penalties tired legs
began to show, and more chances were beginning to spawn.
Early in the second period Gary Sarney was
first to score - a beautiful long range effort lobbing the keeper from
40 yards, who could only get fingertips to the ball to stop it making
it even more a wonder goal to score and surely the first contender for
goal of the season, and Sarney's first yellow card for removing his shirt
in all the celebrations that followed.
But Sv wouldn't give up, all credit to them they kept on fighting and
sure enough they netted 10 minutes later. Their left back, a 'Tyson' they
called him, authenticated a diving header way out of reach of Robinson
to make it 4-4 with 5 minutes until the whistle.
But then luck came Manics way; a short corner was taken and David Fenton
belted the ball hard and low toward the goal. Taking first one deflection
and then another off Gavin Baker the keeper
had no chance and Manics went 5-4 up to win the match and progress to
the next round.
Scorers: Baker (3) Sarney (1) Matthias (1).
Assists: Sarney (1) Matthias (1).
The Manics Man
of the Match went to Hatrick Hero Gavin Baker and the Referee's player
of the match went to Gary Sarney for his strike on goal.
Thanks to the fans who came to watch the game!
Manics 5 Southcote Video 4
great team performance - lets keep it going for next week!"
for Bracknell Manics FC