National Tournament First Round. Oak Park Leisure Centre Walsall Wood. Sunday 21st May 2017.
Hartshill Strollers met with their old friends and rivals Birmingham aka Beechcroft, for the first round of the Walking Football National Tournament. This was held on neutral ground at Oak Park Leisure Centre, Walsall Wood and the game was a lengthy 25 minutes each way.
Hartshill Squad: Pete Gibbons, Kevin Weston, Pete Grove, Gary Davis (M), Adrian Chilton,
Steve Nicholls, Mark Grazier, Rob Dunning, Eddie Tromans.
Referee: Steve Dredge.
Hartshill Strollers 0-1 Birmingham.
This was a good, evenly matched and fast paced gamed with several near misses from both teams. Luckily for the Strollers, Birmingham had 2 goals disallowed, one because they didn’t wait for the refs whistle before they kicked the ball and the second because their player was running. Birmingham also had a player sent to the sin bin for persistent running.
Hartshill also nearly had a player sent to the sin bin but one of the Birmingham players protested and the ref allowed the player to stay on the pitch. Although this does go against the WFU rules, it was a sign of good sportsmanship from the Birmingham player.
As the score stayed at 0-0, the game went to extra time, this was 10 minutes each way and resulted in Birmingham slipping one past our goalie, leaving Hartshill unable to level the score in the remaining time.
This was quite a long, gruelling game, so well done to all players on both teams for giving it their all throughout.
MAN OF THE MATCH: PETE GIBBONS -HARTSHILL STROLLERS GOALIE.
I don't normally give a Man of the Match but, I have to say that Pete Gibbons, was kept busy and did an impressive job at keeping the ball out of the back of the net. Well done Pete.
Good luck to Birmingham, we hope you do well throughout the rest of the tournament and end up taking the trophy home.
Report by Fiona J Weston