Scorers: Potter, Jenkins
The 8’s entered their match with Broomfield facing oppressive Mexico 86 style heat and with key players missing in Waldrum, Soundy and Croft. The first half got underway with Broomfield setting out their stall early. They made most of the running in the first 20 minutes – pushing forward they had a few decent efforts but nothing too troubling for AP.
As the game progressed one or two of their players were less than sporting, AP sensibly ignored the spitting and idle threats of violence and got stuck in hard and fair. Jack Parsons and James Broome snapped away in midfield with solid tackles. When they could AP managed to put together some forward play that created a few chances.
Whilst not Brazil vs Portugal in the semi’s of the world cup (more Doncaster v Rochdale on a nasty Tuesday night) it was an exciting first half with a scrappy AP performance but with Broomfield playing the better football. On 25 mins Jamie “Plan B” Roberts made an impressive tip over the bar from a cross come shot from Broomfield.
Whilst well marshaled by Stephen Payne the opposing number 2 clearly had the potential to cause AP trouble. Some sloppy marking from a throw in deep inside AP half left him free to make a run in to the box and knock the ball past Roberts for 1-0.
Despite the heat and kicking uphill AP fought back with manager Simon Tolcher giving Fergie a run for his money with his version of the hairdryer treatment. It was much needed on a very hot day. The hard work paid off when big man Adam Jenkins was barged off the ball in the Broomfield penalty area. Having not played in over 5 years, Jenkins had no qualms about taking the spot kick. The first he planted with aplomb but was ordered to retake after the keeper came off his line. The second attempt was scuffed but squeezed right of the keeper. They all count and AP were back in it.
The second half was much of the same. New signing Josh Roberts came on for Jenkins and worked hard up front. There was a welcome return for defender Daniel ‘Graveson’ Ware who battled well against Broomfield’s right winger, and Will Weaver came in to attack. Despite a positive start from AP Broomfield went ahead with a fine solo effort from their Emile Heskey lookalike to make it 2-1 to the visitors. AP twice went close to equalising when Parsons forced a fingertip save from Broomfield’s keeper, and Dudmish hit a 25 yarder just over the bar.
It pretty much stayed like that going back and forward, with Emyln Robbins making some important last minute interceptions and headers. The moment of the match was his crunching tackle that sent Broomfield’s playmaker into orbit. A fine display of aggression and fight from the gentle giant, and well worth the death threats afterwards. Despite Sam Wolfman pushing forward well and getting some decent crosses in AP still searched to level the game.
A moment of quality from David Potter saw him use pace and dribbling skills to take on two of Broomfield’s defenders and slot the ball neatly in to make it 2-2. With some frantic last minute challenges the AP 8s managed to hold on – a hard fought point against decent opposition.
The AP 8’s have done well to remain undefeated so far. Despite some untidy performances they are grinding the results out. There is fight and spirit but going forward the aim now has to be to keep the ball more and make the oppo work to get it back.
MOM: A solid Emyln Robbins, who worked hard and made some important challenges. Mentions to both goal scorers too – Jenkins for stepping up and taking the penalty and Potter for getting us the point with a well taken, crucial goal.
Match Report – George Waldrum