The Men’s 2’s were shocked to suffer a second defeat in a row with a 2-5 loss to United Service Portsmouth 2s, a team that had pipped them to the Division 9 title 2 seasons previously. With the sun shining gloriously over Smallbrook and with the opposition only turning up with 10 players the team were confident that they could get their first points on the board so long as they played as well as they know that they can.
The first half started cautiously for both sides but they island dominated the chances with Tom Young, Wightlink Man of the Match John Kirby and Aaron Edmunds-Lamb unlucky not to score from a variety of efforts. The opposition did also have opportunities but the defence of Archie Clark, Peter McKnight, Steve McKnight and Toby Noyes were coping well with any threats and Sam Bridges continued his fine form in between the posts. Just before half time the team were finally rewarded with a goal from John Kirby at a short corner and although the team were at least leading they felt that they should have been out of sight by this point.
The second half found the team continuing to forge chances but as was the story last week they were either close, or poor passes in good positions. The team were made to pay for the lack of clinical attacking when the opposition cut through and equalised somewhat against the run of play. The island were clearly a little deflated by this but knew that if they continued to put the pressure on then a goal could come, however it was United Services Portsmouth who got the next goal and as happened the previous week this was swiftly followed by another and the team now found themselves 2 goals down and fighting an uphill battle to get back into the game. The midfield of Ethan Edmunds-Lamb, captain Mike Dodds, Steve Holbrook and Will Bevan (and international super star sub John Pearson) worked hard to try to pull the team back into the game. The island side did manage to pull one of those goals back after a carbon copy short corner routine saw John Kirby net his second of the day and were unlucky not to equalise when Tom Young found himself with just the keeper to beat but his attempted lob was not quite strong enough. The island’s defeat was sealed when the opposition managed to score 2 more quick fire goals and there was no way back from there. Small margins at the moment and the team knows that on another day the team would have collected all the points here but we live and learn and onto the next match.