VWFC vs Knaphill 'A'
26/03/2016 Virginia Water 5 - 1 Knaphill 'A'
Report by Dan Basheer
With Virginia Water Football Club planning for the future, Saturday saw the debut of their third team in a friendly against Knaphill Athletic 'A', who play in division four of the Guildford & Woking Alliance League. Waters fielded a side comprised of some of their more experienced players, those needing some match practice and also gave debuts to players in the youth system at the club, and they were not really sure what to expect from their opponents.
As it turned out, Waters were comfortable for the majority of the game and could and should have had a greater margin in the scoreline. Despite a lot of players not having played together before, Waters settled into the game early on, moving the ball around the field well. The backline was marshalled well by the experienced Richard Banks, and the centre midfield duo of Ross Miller and Paul May kept the game in Waters' control.
The scoring was opened by Jamie Kemp from the pentaly spot after he was barged over in the box. To their credit, Knaphill didn't let going a goal down deter them and they got back into the game when an inswinging corner carried in the wind, was headed into his own net from a couple of yards out by full back Dan Basheer. His blushes were spared a few minutes later though, when a deep ball into the box by skipper Paul May was not held by the away keeper, who fumbled the ball into the net.
Waters then took complete control of the game for the rest of the half. Basheer then made up for his own goal by scoring at the right end of the pitch, robbing the ball from Knaphill's right back, and ghosting past the covering centre back before blazing the ball past the goalkepeer. Alex Ssenabulya added a fourth for Waters after a fantastic through ball from Ross Miller sliced the away defence, for Ssenabulya to slot into the far corner beyond the goalkeeper.
Waters were in control, but Knaphill did not fold in the second half. They could have got themselves back in the game with a penalty of their own, given for a push in the box. However, debutant goalkeeper Anthony Lindsay produced a fine save diving to his right to push the ball away, to cap a assured performance from the 16 year old. Knaphill were pressing more than they were in the first half, trying to deny Waters space to play out from the back, but in doing so they left gaps at the back that were exploited. Were it not for some erratic finishing from Kemp, and the linesman's flag Waters could have had more goals. As it was, Waters only score one more - Ross Miller finished from close range following a flick on from Richard Banks from a Waters corner.
All in it was a very accomplished performance from the home side, with young players Matt Ashfield, Alex Lovell, Robert Sung and Jake Basheer all looking at home alongside the senior players in the team. It was food for thought for the watching senior management of the club; Rob Lamb and Colin Hodgkinson from the reserves and also first team manager Ceri Jones, who were encouraged by the performance of the new side.
MoM = Ross Miller
Paul May (c)