Alfold keep pace in promotion race with important victory

Southern Combination League Division 1: Alfold v Selsey. Pic Steve Robards SR1821802 SUS-180820-150955001
Southern Combination League Division 1: Alfold v Selsey. Pic Steve Robards SR1821802 SUS-180820-150955001

Alfold put in a Jekyll and Hyde display to keep pace in the Division 1 promotion race with an important home win.

They showed flashes of brilliance but also had poor spells in a 5-3 victory over Wick, which was a crucial three points as all the clubs surrounding second-placed Fold all picked up three points.

Wick were also one of only two sides to beat their hosts this season. And the home side were missing many key players including keeper Luis Correia, Jack Stafford, Jack Nourse, Gavin Fowler and Dan Hallett.

With no recognised goalkeeper available, manager Jack Munday had to step in between the sticks, as well as Jamie Wanstall playing out of position at full-back.

Alfold started the first couple of minutes well but after a cleared corner and an uncharacteristic mistake by Zach Gray, Shane Brazil put Wick 1-0 ahead.

With more pressure coming from Wick it was a frustrating first half hour for Alfold. But after 30 minutes, Fold then found their rhythm and began to spring passes together.

Tiago Andrade came close and chances for Sam Lemon and Johden De Meyer went begging. It was Jordan Mase that levelled the score through a neat finish six minutes before the break.

Just a few minutes later and Mase doubled his tally after his shot was deflected off a defender and back at him only for the ball to roll back into the goal for 2-1.

Then just on the stroke of half-time, Andrade who found himself in space to stab the ball home to put Alfold in 3-1 up.

Early in the second half Kelvin Lucas deservedly got on the scoresheet with a brilliant finish. He then doubled his tally ten minutes after with a superb finish inside the box after beating two players for 5-1.

Alfold were then guilty of being sloppy at the back with a pass that led to Wick’s Kieron Playle-Howard pulling one back.

The effort didn’t stop there from Wick and they were rewarded with another goal late through Nathan Ediker to pull the score back to a more respectable 5-3.

On what was his 50th match in charge, manager Jack Munday said: “At stages we were at our poorest we’ve been this season, but then there were 15 minute intervals where we looked as strong as we have all season going forward.

“The objective before the game was three points, I’d have taken 1-0 or 7-6 as long as we got the win.

“One thing is for sure Wick don’t roll over. At 5-1 it could have got silly but they played with great pride.

“At this stage of the season as it gets dryer and pitches get a little harder and bobbly you’ll see some surprising results. Wick were what we considered a huge banana skin, I’m so glad we have got past this one but I know there are quite a few more ahead for us.”

Alfold: J.Munday, Gray (Siatous), Howard, Jacques, Wanstall, Pett, Mase, De Meyer (Purkis), Lucas, Lemon, Andrade (M.Munday).