Upminster Mens 3s were looking to bounce back after a couple of narrow defeats at high scoring Saffron Walden.
Tom Hilson took the reigns of captaincy with regular captain Martin Nutt absent through work commitments which seemed to be a theme as Hilson only had a bare X1 for the game.Taking this onboard, Hilson tried a 5-3-2 formation with the resources available but the early exchanges of the game gave a clear pattern of what was to follow.
Saffron Walden movement was excellent and transitioned the ball from one side of the pitch to the other, making Upminster work extremely hard to get a touch of the ball. The pressure finally told when a superb hit from the Top of the D gave the home side a 1-0 lead. This was soon followed with a scrappy 2nd goal with a loose ball being pushed into the net to extend Saffron Walden’s lead. Usually mild-mannered Steve Woods was given a yellow card which reduced Upminster down to 10 men. 2 quick goals followed and Upminster were 4 down at half-time.
The break gave Upminster the chance to reset and look to regroup as a unit. This clearly worked as the U’s pulled a goal back when Joel Munday pushed the ball over the line from close range. Then unfortunately a goal was disallowed for a dubious back stick from a well worked PC which would have made it 4-2. This seemed to be the wake up call Saffron Walden required as they grabbed their 5th goal of the game and extend their overall lead. 2 more goals for each team, another for Munday gave a final score of 6-2 to the home side but Upminster’s 2nd half performance is something they can use as a positive going into next weeks game.
MOTM – John Daltry
DOTM – Tom Hilson