Saturday 22nd August 2015 – Southern League Division One Central
Egham Town 0 St Ives Town 1
Weather more suitable for cricket than football, a three hour coach trip and only a fifteen minute warm up could not knock the Ives out of their stride as they claimed their second away win in a week at Egham on Saturday to move up to third place in the table.
In spite of their nightmare journey and truncated warm the Ives were the first team into their stride and Luis Viera almost wriggled his way through in the first minute.
The visitors first shot of the game came on seven minutes as a cross from the right by Ebey Marango was only half cleared to Jack Higgs 25 yards out. For once Higgs failed to get a clean strike on the ball on the bobbly pitch, but home keeper Jamie Norris was also fooled by the mishit effort and was relieved to see the ball curl inches wide of his right hand post.
The Ives were winning everything in midfield and continued to push forward. On 19 minutes Harry O’Malley did well to win a tackle and feed the ball to Viera wide left, his deep cross found Danny Watson in space beyond the far post, but Watson’s first time effort flew well over the top.
It was no surprise when the visitors went in front only two minutes later as debutant Peter Clark won the ball in midfield and sprayed an inch perfect ball to Viera wide on the left. The young winger went outside his full back and laid the ball back to Jordan Jarrold on the corner of the box. Jarrold found himself with time, and space, looked up and picked his spot with a precise curled effort that drifted over Norris and nestled in the far corner of the net.
The rampant Ives continued to press forward, their next effort coming only three minutes later as Jarrold fired in a crossfield ball that Watson brought down expertly in the box, but he only succeeded in firing straight at Norris from 15 yards.
The Sarnies seemed to be attempting to feed their left winger Haluna Masembe at every opportunity, and he had their first effort at goal after 27 minutes as he ran at the Ives defence and found just enough space to try a shot from the edge of the box, but the effort lacked power and keeper Tim Trebes saved comfortably low to his left.
The general flow of the game continued with Ives pressing forward and the stretched home defence struggling to keep them out. Jordan Jarrold was getting forward at every opportunity and on 35 minutes he fed a slide rule pass down the left to Watson. Watson unselfishly teed up Higgs who fired in a cracker from 25 yards that cannoned off home defender Luke Neville, the rebound fell to Clark who fired in another well struck effort from a similar distance that was bravely blocked by Mitchell Gutteridge.
The Ives should have gone two up four minutes before the break as Higgs slid a defence splitting ball down the right channel that put Watson clear. The young striker did not realise the time he had and went for an early attempt to chip Norris from the edge of the box, unfortunately he did not get it right and only succeeded in clipping the ball into the grateful hands of the keeper.
The home team had only their second effort at goal as the half entered added time, but Brendan Matthew failed to hit the target from 20 yards after good interplay between Mason Welsh-Turner and Larry Boatang had created the space for him.
Ives suffered a double blow early in the second half as both O’Malley and Viera limped off with injuries to be replaced by Dan Moyes and Joe Peacock. But this did not hamper the visitors flow and on 55 minutes Clark fed in Peacock down the right. Peacock’s low cross found Watson in the box, but his shot on the turn was blocked and the ball ran to Higgs on the edge of the box, his first time effort was straight at Norris.
While the score was only 1-0 the home side were still in the game and they were now beginning to have a few sorties into the Ives defensive third and on 58 minutes Boatang created their best chance of the game so far as he played in Mathew, but the Sarnies striker snatched at his effort from just inside the box and pulled it so far wide the ball went out for a throw.
The Ives were still comfortably on top, but could not find the goal to kill off the game. Clark went on a surging run from midfield on 65 minutes that saw him force his way through the middle, but he was eventually blocked out by three covering defenders before he could get his shot away.
Marango was now operating down the left and was giving full back Louis Chandler-Joseph a torrid time. He went past him yet again on 76 minutes and got to the bye line, his low pull back was deflected to Higgs on the edge of the box. Higgs crisp first time effort flew agonisingly the wrong side of the upright and thudded the wall behind the goal.
The Sarnies created their final opportunity to grab an unlikely equaliser with seven minutes to go as Josh Andrew got past Jarrold for almost the only time in the game and delivered a driven cross into the box that only just evaded the diving Mathew.
The visitors final strike on goal came on 89 minutes as the hard running Clark surged forward again from midfield and laid the ball into Peacock who fired in a crisp effort from 30 yards that was well gathered low to his left by Norris.
As the game entered added time Marango again set off down the left before cleverly winning a corner off the long suffering Chandler-Joseph to allow Ives to run down the clock for another very professional three points on the road.
Once again there were a few man of the match contenders. Peter Clark had a very solid opening game in midfield and was constantly looking to back up the strikers, he looks like an excellent acquisition. Ebey Marango was a constant thorn in the side of the Sarnies defence and came very close to winning it, but the accolade for this game goes to the man who won it for the Ives, not only for his well taken goal (although some say it was a mishit cross), but also his excellent defensive work in keeping another tricky winger quiet and his tireless efforts to get forward at every opportunity..
St Ives team : Trebes (capt), O’Malley (Moyes 53), Jarrold, De’ath, Gentle, Clark, Marango, Higgs, Eason (Warwick 79), Watson, Viera (Peacock 53)
Unused subs : Simons, Draycott
Goals : Jarrold 21
Supporters Man of the Match : Jordan Jarrold
Final Score : Egham Town 0 St Ives Town 1
Attendance : 114