Saturday 11th November
Ladies 5s vs Bedford 7 - 2-1 loss
We were a bit thin on the ground for our 10am home game this week with only 11 players. However, it was a lovely sunny day and we were looking forward to the game, despite all knowing that we were in it for the whole match and couldn’t afford any injuries. It was also great to welcome Sarah (‘Lloydy’) back to the team this week.
For the most part it was an even match with lots of end-to-end play. There were opportunities for both sides but good defending from both teams kept the score down. Lloydy took us 1-0 up after 20 minutes after a great cross into the D from Ivy which buoyed the team along. However, Bedford took the score to 1-1 at 27 minutes.
We went into half time hoping that we could get at least one more in the second half. However, a nasty head-to-head collision between Katie W and a Bedford player meant Katie had to spend the rest of the match on the bench with an icepack.
We continued to attack but were unable to convert anything. This all happened at the same time as Bedford managed to find a ‘super sub’ who, once on the pitch, started to mastermind some opportunities for Bedford. This coincided with Teagan taking a nasty ball to the thigh. Adding this to the injury she had already sustained in the first half when Sharon sent a ball squarely into her ankle, meant that she wasn’t able to play at full pace for the rest of the match.
With Broxbourne running at 9.5 players Bedford started to have more possession and, with Broxbourne now running out of steam, it meant that the pitch was opened up and Bedford capitalised on this.
Bedford took the score to 1-2 twenty minutes into the second half and we just weren’t able to claw any back.
Well done to everyone this week and we hope all the injuries are better soon. It was tough deciding on player of the match this week as everyone played so well, making lots of decent runs, some good passing and generally continuing to put into practice what we have been learning. Still plenty to work on with not sending the ball straight to or running into the opposition but I’m sure we’ll get there.
Rachel took player of the match for her excellent play on the right hand side with some super runs and good passing. Donkey(s) went to Katie W and Teagan for their injuries. We hope you are both on the mend.
Ladies 2s vs Bedford 3 - 1-1 draw
On Saturday the Ladies 2s took on Bedfords 3s at home. The weather was surprisingly sunny and Brox started strong with 14 players ready to go!
Despite a strong start, Bedford took an early lead from a counter attack, making it 1-0. However our ladies didn’t give up, making some great plays through to our forwards who worked hard for some lovely runs. Beth brought the score back to 1-1 before half time, after a strong run that ended with a fantastic reverse hit past their keeper.
The second half wasn’t easy, as Brox fought for the second goal they needed to win the game. Unfortunately despite a huge effort from everyone, the second goal didn’t quite come. However, our ladies 2s overall had a really great game, showing some of their best communication as a team yet and some lovely saves from their keeper, Alisha, which can’t go unnoticed!
Some honourable mentions: Millie’s great save on the goal line which made the whole team freeze for about 10 seconds and Lydia and Kelly falling over right next to each other (so cute and silly).
Player of the Match went to Emily for some fantastic plays and skills throughout the game, and Donkey of the Day went to Darcy for turning up 5 minutes before pushback.
Mens 1s vs Hertford 1 - 10-2 win
The Men’s 1’s welcomed local rivals Hertford to Badger Field for a much anticipated match, which based on recent history, is up there with the El Classico or Old Firm. The Badgers were buoyed by the return of Mitch Chapman following a calf strain who proved to be the match winner in the last clash between the two sides. Going into the game, Coach Panners reinforced the importance of staying positive, continuing to get outcomes going forward and keeping possession of the ball.
The Badgers made a blistering start, moving the ball around confidently and after only two mins they created the first clear-cut chance of the game as Josh Chapman made a foray forward into the D and his shot hit a Hertford player on the line resulting in a penalty flick being awarded. Having despatched a flick earlier in the season against Upminster, forward Sam Groves confidently grabbed the ball to be the taker. On this occasion, however, Groves’ flick towards the top right corner was saved by the keeper. The Badgers didn’t allow this to halt their momentum and from a free hit on the edge of the Hertford 25, they manipulated a 2 v 1 for Blemkin to make a characteristic run along the right baseline and drop it back towards Josh Chapman who this time avoided all Hertford defenders to put it into the goal. There was no let-up from the Badgers and another well worked move found Chris Hopson in the D who made no mistake from half a yard out. A further two penalty corners brought two more goals for the Badgers, both converted through flicks from Meaner. The first went like a tracer bullet to the right side of the goal and the second perfectly placed into the bottom left hand corner of the goal. There was one more goal before half time as Sam Groves made amends for his earlier miss from the spot to cross the ball on his reverse to Mitch Chapman to deflect into the goal and continue his scoring streak against Hertford. After a dominant performance, the Badgers took their foot off the gas towards half time and Hertford won a penalty corner following a foot in the D and duly converted a flick. As half time approached, Hertford snatched another goal as a bobbling ball evaded Bryans and Menear and a Hertford forward was able to get a faint touch to put it past Thomas in goal.
The Badgers received a rocket at half time and were told to pick-up their standards again. They responded immediately as Toby House and Chris Hopson combined down the right for Hopson to finish the flowing move. Toby House was yet again involved and his pass was beautifully touched behind his back by Groves as the Hertford keeper rushed out of his goal. Hertford appeared shellshocked and struggled to cope with Toby House who deservedly made his way onto the scoresheet to make it 8 for Broxbourne. The goal was shrouded in controversy as an attempted shot by Reggie Hopson appeared to come off his back stick and fell to Toby House who surprised everyone, including his own team, to finish on his front stick into the bottom corner. Hertford bemoaned the lack of VAR in Division B South but it may not have reached the ‘clear and obvious’ threshold to be overturned. After a brief spell, where Hertford showed great character to fight their way into the half, Broxbourne won another corner and Meaner was ruthless as he yet again stepped up to convert the flick. Keen to reach double figures, Broxbourne continued to push forward as the game reached its close. Upon winning a penalty corner it was decided that it was time to unleash the ‘Slippery Bert’ routine. In an interesting set of mind games, Bert himself attempted to explain the move to the Hertford defence however this offered little help as the routine, characterised by a sea of bodies going everywhere and ball fizzing around the D, resulted in the ball falling to Stan Mason who calmly controlled and finished into the bottom corner on a swivel that wouldn’t have been out of place on Strictly.
The game finished 10-2 and took the Badger’s goal difference to 37 after 8 games of the season. The team had the opportunity to celebrate the win at the club with some rousing karaoke which included many of the usual fan favourites. They hope to continue their winning streak as they travel to Bedford next weekend.
Ladies 3s vs Shefford & Sandy 2 - 1-0 loss
The Ladies 3s were at home this week against Shefford and Sandy and hoping to build on a few disappointing results recently.
This match report will be shorter than usual (though nowhere near the length when the match report was written by Tara and Hannah), as we are going to discard any information about the first half due to the fact that, in the words of coach Matt, it needs to be forgotten!
Being one nil down going into the second half did spur the team on, and Broxbourne came out dominating the play, however were unable to find an equaliser despite numerous short corners and chances in the D as well as some fantastic defensive work when Shefford and Sandy did make their breaks up the pitch, which were dealt with effectively by the mid and defence.
There will certainly be some areas we are sure will be worked on by coach Matt, who once again stuck with us after a fantastic win for the men’s ones and replaced his opportunity for teas with watching a rather frustrating game.
Despite the disappointment, the team were on form for the karaoke social in the bar in the evening and performed an amazing rendition of S Club 7’s Reach, for the stars and also STEPS 5, 6, 7, 8 (in which Hannah and Lauren needed to be taught the dance routine, because they are that young!)
The player of the match this week went to Tors for some overall great defending and heroics on the goal line.
The donkey was unanimous before the match had even started when the team discovered that Tara had in fact gone for a hair appointment instead of playing! We would like to wish her sister a happy birthday, but that still couldn’t save Tara from the award.
Mens 3s vs Rickmansworth 2 - 4-2 loss
The 3s had the joys of the late game at home this week, eating into the time at the bar. With the in mind the 3s were distracted not having the best start. They went 1-0 down. Sparking them into life, they played better, managing to score through Bobby. Rickmansworth them immediately make it 2-1. Jake made it 2-2. The legs went after that. Final score 4-2.
Ladies 4s vs Stevenage 4 - 6-1 win
A cold and early start saw Broxbourne 4’s travel to Stevenage in hopes of getting a win which would place them at the top of the table. In the third minute, Stevenage took the lead which kicked Broxbourne into gear. In the 11th minute, Broxbourne were awarded a short corner which resulted in the first goal by Elinor from her deflection at the right post. Broxbourne then took the lead in the 19th minute by a great shot from Callia. Our defence was working as a tight unit and prevented Stevenage from getting back in the game. With help from strong midfield work, we managed to create lots of chances. This led to a 3rd goal in the 30th minute in which Brawny worked the ball around the keeper allowing Elinor to finish at the far post. The score was 3-1 at half time.
After a motivating team talk, we went into the second half looking to build on our lead. Strong team work allowed us to continue dominating the game. Persistent work from Roisin in midfield allowed us to move the ball down the pitch, however Stevanage’s stubborn defence blocked our efforts. A cross into our attacking D in the 53rd minute saw a lovely shot from Brawny extending the lead to 4-1. Quickly after, in the 60th minute Brawny scored another great goal to put us 5-1 up. Our defence worked hard to block any comeback from Stevenage allowing us to keep pushing forward. Nearing the end of the match, we were awarded a penalty flick which was taken by Sam. A lovely shot into the goal gave the keeper no chance and put us 6-1 up in the 68th minute.
Full time: 6-1
Spirits were high leaving the match as everyone worked hard as a team and we were proud of our great result. Later in the day, we found out that we are now top of the league!!
Mens 2s vs St Albans 4 - 2-1 win
The men’s 2nd team took on the top of the league, St Albans. Even though Kav our captain arriving late. We got a focus in the warm up and set ourself up for the start of the game. We started the game brilliantly sticking to our game plan that we set out before the game. It was beautiful build up play towards the first goal, Making the game look simple. Jack with another goal for us ( the tap in master) with an assisted from Cranners . Our next goal was from a Shortie and Shrek made a flick to the far post and Kegan with a defection in scored. We went into the second half 2-0 up. Joe made two spectacular from a Shortie and kept us in the game. Our second half was more difficult as we had chances and just couldn’t put them away. St Albans in the second half had a much higher press than the first half and put our backs under pressure more. Eventually we had a rough patch and St Albans got one back, making in 2-1. The momentum was with them now St Albans and our side was good defensively and were able to ride the game out to a 2-1 win for us. We all had a brilliant game.
Ladies 1s vs City of Peterborough 1 - 3-0 win
The Broxbourne media team has faced a turbulent 3 weeks following the resignation of long standing Senior Media Manager Lisa Banahan. Banahan has raised concerns over the strikes noting that “they are beginning to affect the reputation” of a once very successful multimedia production team.
Thankfully, a late arrival from the ‘London Car’, and the wrongful nomination of donkey has meant that this weeks’ match report has been saved by none other than 2023s top goal scorer Bench ‘dog poo-cat wee’ Scarrott. Scarrott kindly volunteered her residence to give match day mascot Wednesday Addams a Saturday off from sideline support. However, owner Shallow Al raised concerns with Animal Welfare Regulations over the amount of excreted matter around the household. All evidence of faeces were quickly cleared by ex mens 1s player Ben Scarrott who assured Brown that Wednesday would be in good hands within the ever growing Ware petting zoo.
The badgers were back on the road this week, travelling with a strong squad of 15 to Peterborough. The team saw the debut appearance of Pippa ‘Pat’ McCormick to the badgers. McCormick who has been out of the sport for 10 years, trading the Old Joe clocktower for the Hollywood hills said “it's like she's never been away” as she dusted off her old stick for training this week. McCormick has been involved in the set design of Legally Ginger 4 and has been appointed Ginger Rights Liason Officer (GRLO) for the club, campaigning to scrap mandatory fining for gingers. The introduction of her bespoke #gingersneedtheir20ps has been welcomed by the ginger community club wide, with men's 1s defender Matt Maneer stating that the "20p if you're ginger fine" has significantly impacted his recent mortgage application and Charlotte Skipp facing relationship issues with Gorgeous George due to the weekly financial burden. Ginger bearded Club Captain Josh Chapman has formally welcomed Pat to the role in the Broxbourne weekly press conference, following years of battling erroneous ginger based fines stating "even though I generally pay 10p as its only my beard that's ginger, the impact of these fines during the cost of living crisis cannot be ignored any longer”.
Upon arrival to Peterborough it became apparent that mother of 1, Gemma Wilkinson had forgotten some essential safety equipment for the game. Wilkinson sought to find a replacement by entering the Peterborough kitchen and asking the head chef if he had any suitable utensils which could double up as shin protectors for the match. The Wilkinson family issues didn't stop there when only child, Ollie Wilkinson was under fire from the management team after firstly, failing to bring the required donuts and secondly, avoiding his management responsibilities to play football during the game.
The game got underway with the Broxbourne team putting City of Peterborough under pressure from the first push back. Half backs Stacey and Skipp quickly adapted to the Peterborough press finding spaces down the line for forwards Luka and Wheadon to run onto. After a 15 minute deadlock, a brilliant quick ball from Tart found Wilkins who drove into the D and fired a rocket into the bottom left corner to take the away side to a well deserved 1-0 lead. Not long after that, Broxbourne striker and single Mum, Laura Wills found a gap in the Peterborough defence and roofed the ball past the keeper. The decision was quickly overturned by the umpire due to Wills having “surprisingly big knees for someone with such a small head”. In a half time interview Wills claimed to have been “wronged” by the umpire. This only fuelled the forwards’ hunger to get on the score sheet, and minutes before the half time whistle, a well worked pass from Wilkinson gave Wills a second chance and she took no prisoners in finding the backboard. After a quiet first half Hellery made a flurry of essential saves to deny the Peterborough attack of any reward. At the half time team talk Scarrott was full of compliments for the badger performance and encouraged more of the same in the second half. Manager Lucy Hoskin was pleased to hear that her side was in the lead at the half time break after no recollection of the game due to an intense substitution schedule. The second half got underway with some game saving tackles by Banahan and an unbreakable new centre back duo Cat-Pat. Midfielders Brown and Baker created continuous opportunities through the middle of the pitch and keeping the ball in the attacking half. Not long into the second half the badgers extended their lead with a well finished goal by current top goal scorer and captain Ellie Welsh. The game finished with a convincing 3-0 win taking the team onto 14 total points on the table. Player of the match was awarded to one half of Cat-Pat, Cat, who's famous disguise pass pierced through the Peterborough lines creating endless opportunities for the badgers throughout the game.
Captain Ellie Welsh was inspired by her daily Christmas film viewing to organise a post game ‘meet cute’ at the golden arches. This was welcomed by Elton John lookalike Em Wilkins who was eager to try the new Chicken Box sharing item alongside her usual order of a large double Big Mac meal. Midfielder Hannah Baker was missing from the meet cute, rumoured to be pursuing a love interest with umpire Alan after lust between the two intensified throughout the game.
The team are back at the badgerden next weekend for a top-of-the-middle-of-the-table clash against Cambridge Uni 2s.
Mens 4s vs Letchworth 6 - 5-0 loss
A youthful M4 visited Letchworth and played their vets side. They struggled to deal with the home sides old style of play, and were 2-0 down at half time, without really getting into the game.
The 2nd half improved and chances fell to Tom, James and Andy H from a penalty corner, but none were converted. Letchworth slick short corner routines enabled to put 3 more past the helpless White in goal, although he though he’d kept a clean sheet.
Luke Hughes then decided to challenge the umpire decision and received a Green. We go again this weekend, keep the positive things going.
Sunday 12th November - Cup fixture
Ladies O35s vs Southgate - 3-1 win
Coming up next weekend...
Saturday 18th November
10am - Mens 4s vs Welwyn Garden City 4
11:30am - Mens 2s vs Rickmansworth 1
1pm - Ladies 1s vs Cambridge City 2
2:30pm - Ladies 4s vs Bedford 6
10am - Ladies 5s vs Welwyn Garden City 3
11:30am - Ladies 2s vs Welwyn Garden City 1
12:30pm - Ladies 3s vs Cheshunt 1
1pm - Mens 1s vs Bedford 2
4pm - Mens 3s vs Stevenage 2