Depleted Melbourn defeat Longstanton

Melbourn 2 Longstanton 1

A BARE Melbourn eleven showed that even when they’re without a number of players they can compete with the best teams in the division.

This was a truly brilliant team performance with every player on display showing their worth.

Melbourn started on the front foot but the game soon settled into an end-to-end affair which owed much to the stern defending of both teams but Ben Fox opened the scoring midway through the first half.

From out wide and just inside the opposing half, Fox hit a searching deep cross which caught the ‘keeper unawares and sailed into the back of the net. Indeed, it was the sort of goal that was always going to open the scoring and minutes later Longstanton equalised in an equally lucky fashion. A corner from the right looked like it would sail safely across the box and out into touch only to hit a divot and bounce viciously into the top corner.

It was a goal that could so easily have rocked Melbourn, but with Fox, Michael Wagstaff and skipper Jason Gray controlling the midfield battle, Melbourn were never really threatened.

The second half started with a bang with the away forward hitting the crossbar from a corner as Melbourn found themselves entrenched in their own half.

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Mark Ferrari was on hand to make two fantastic saves and when the away team finally beat him they found Rhett Monahan on the line to clear. Melbourn defended ruggedly and were able to get themselves back into the game gradually.

As the half drew on, Melbourn looked the more likely to score and when the superb centre-back Tom Staley went on a run up the right wing his deep cross looked to be meeting the head of Kris Watters. Inexplicably, the centre-back decided it was easier to push Watters in the face and Ben Fox dutifully rammed home the resultant penalty to seal an important victory.

Melbourn: Ferrari, Walker, Bryan, Staley, Monahan; Morris, Gray, Fox, Wagstaff, Watters, Edwards.