Heroic Hitman halts NLR

By Danny Caro, March 14, 2014

Catford and Bromley Macc.

4 - 1

Norstar London Raiders C

Jamie Sinai
Jonny Lee
Nick Haringman
Match date:
30 March 2014 10:30am
Norseman FC
Quentin Fox

A double from Oli Hitman boosted Catford promotion hopes as they produced arguably the performance of the season to stun table-topping NLR into submission with a brilliant 4-1 victory.

Having only conceded more than two goals in just one game all season (a 5-2 reverse against Premier Division Faithfold A), Norstar were extremely disappointed to ship four goals against a good Catford side.

The Cats went 1-0 down early on after a defensive error saw Nick Haringman controlled the ball in the box before beating, but came back within a few minutes, Hitman equalised at the far post after Jonny Lee fizzed in a cross from the right.

However Norstar's slugglishness then got the better of them. We struggled to keep the ball, passes went astray and Norstar couldn't cope with Catford's narrow pitch.

Thereafter, Catford took complete control, with Yonni Bord, Jamie Sinai and Jonny Lee dominating up front and Gary Hill and Gabriel John clearing up in the middle. A second goal came soon after when Sinai spotted the keeper off his line and lobbed him from 25 yards.

Lee grabbed a third just before half time as he scored a direct free-kick from an extremely tight angle.

Three good goals, but the best was yet to come. Within 10 minutes of the restart, Lee sprinted down the right and cut the ball back to Yonni Bord, who hooked it across to Oli Hitman. Having made a surging run of his own from his own half, Hitman hit an unstoppable first time shot on the half volley straight into the far bottom corner, from fully 20 yards.

After that, Norstar came back into the game, even forcing a couple of good saves from Guy Ben Aroya, but the Cats largely limited L'Orange to shooting from long-distance and the defended in numbers to keep them out.

Cats captain Adam Luria told JC Sport: "It was really a case of what might have been for us as a display like this is exactly what we've been lacking as we've lost to lesser teams than Norstar in recent weeks.

"We were strong all over the pitch, attacked with conviction and even when on the back foot made sure we defended stoutly."

NLR boss Zack Gothelf told JC Sport: "It's a shame that our last game will put a slight damper on our season, but we're still top and the pressure is really on L'Equipe. We'd much rather be in our position, with points on the board than need to win all of our remaining games to clinch the title.

"If we look to the positives, we set out to secure promotion at the start of the season, and having brought in quite a few new faces, to have gelled and achieved our aim, is something the whole squad can reflect proudly upon."