Raised game to Vale level
There was a sense that, from previous matches, Sidmouth Men s 1st XI were really becoming a solid unit.
Sidmouth HC 0,
Taunton Vale 1
There was a sense that, from previous matches, Sidmouth Men's 1st XI were really becoming a solid unit. Captain Ian Brown seemed to have inspired and installed a genuine feel-good factor to the team.
However, a special day it had to be if Sidmouth were to knock league leaders Taunton Vale off the podium.
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With a previous captain injured and maybe to be renicknamed Evel Knievel, one on an 'Ibiza' rave reunion, and one missing through the arrival of a fabulous baby boy, it was a game that the bare 11 would have to work at. A recipe that Sidmouth normally relish.
Taunton definitely came out of the blocks the fastest and the first quarter saw what is said to be the best defence in the league fully stretched.
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However, all credit to the Gannon/Pidgeon 'combo' which saw off most signs of penetration.
A few fine saves from Jonty Hill, and great discipline in some ugly situations, showed that the home side were winning the moral highground. Towards the end of the first half, Sidmouth were witness to some dazzling skill from Bobby Brown and team mate Tom Mason, who were unlucky not to finish their strikes.
At half time, Taunton seemed to be slightly disillusioned and Sidmouth pleasantly confident. The morale of the team went to an all new level with the arrival of new father Andrew Welch. The club would like to wish Andrew, Emma and of course baby Felix all the best for the future.
The link brought a massive resurgence to the whole side. Some surging moves from the likes of Scott Rowson, Andrew Joy, Chris Lewis and Byron Fitzgerald set up close chances.
The half seemed to be mainly Sidmouth and, as so many times in hockey, it came down to clinical positioning and finishing.
Sadly, it was from a short corner that Taunton took the points resulting in a 1-0 defeat, however, it was not without a gutsy final� from Sidmouth. Man of the Match was jointly awarded to Paul Gannon and Bobby Brown.
The club would again like to thank the 1st team sponsor Adrenalin Games, the paintball site at Crealy, who have kindly sponsored the team for the forthcoming season.