HSCL Reserve Division One: London Lions Res. 13 Knebworth 1
David Dinkin took centre stage as Lions reserves claimed their best win of the season.
With their ground not available this week, bottom of the league Knebworth switched the fixture to Rowley Lane, but with several players ruled out for them last minute with illness it was a trip they weren’t to relish for long.
Lions were without 15 players themselves through injury, illness, holidays or 1st team duty. This gave a chance for Daniel Helman to find a place on the bench alongside club stalwart and 50 years young Malcolm Newman.
The game itself was a procession, the Lions running in 13 goals and, but for a few tame finishes and some inspired keeping, that figure could well have been doubled. What pleased the management was the discipline the side kept, the slick passing and, most notably, the precise finishing that has been missing these last few weeks and that has cost the side points in these games.
The whole side played well, but the wide men Shai Revivo and Ben Graham really stood out as did Josh Newman who just kept things moving at all times. And both Ben Ellis and Dinkin finished their chances and linked excellently.
For the record:
1-0: Graham’s run down the left and fine cross expertly flicked home by Dinkin on the run.
2-0: Graham again the orchestrator, this time squaring for Ellis to make no mistake.
3-0: Graham and Ellis linked well, the latter pulling back for Schwarz to power home on the run.
4-0: A fine break by Dinkin, fed into path of Graham who scored at second attempt after fine save from keeper.
4-1: Lions switched off from a throw after Berliner had made a fine save following Leader’s misjudgement, this time the forward slotted home.
5-1: Dinkin sees his shot parried, Ellis with the sweetest of volleys from 15 yards.
6-1: Great feet from Revivo saw him beat two men. Quick pass to Newman who in turn slipped to Graham who’s deflected shot found the far corner.
7-1: Solo work from Ellis to complete a fine hat-trick, twisting past two before a sublime chip.
8-1: Start of the Dinkin show. Graham again involved, cutting back for Dinkin to crack home from the edge of the box.
9-1: Great work from Ellis, draws keeper before unselfishly squaring for Dinkin’s hat-trick goal, tapping into an open net.
10-1: Double figures as Revivo gets a well deserved goal. After hitting the post in the 1st half this time he burst onto a Schwarz through ball and finished in fine style.
11-1: If a guy has already scored three it’s not wise to leave him all alone in the box. This Knebworth did, Dinkin made no mistake.
12-1: Schwarz delivered a fine corner. Malcolm Newman rose like a 15 year old, powering a header goalwards. The keeper made a great save but Newman, sensing glory, was not to be denied, smashing home the loose ball before being rightly mobbed by his team mates.
13-1: Schindler had his 42nd effort on goal of the day, yet again the unlucky centre half cum centre forward was brilliantly denied by the keeper’s fingertips, Dinkin though was on hand once again to squeeze home the rebound for his fifth of the game.
Tougher tasks of course lie ahead for Lions, but for today a chance to enjoy a crushing result. Some fine finishing and link up play must give the guys confidence, as will being up to third in the league, their highest of the season. Although Park Street have games in hand it shows how far this side have come in the 6 months since they found themselves in the bottom three after five games.
Lions Res: Danny Berliner, Jacob Lew, Warren Leader, Danny Schindler, Ben Ellis, Jonny Rayner (sub: Malcolm Newman), Josh Newman, David Dinkin, Shai Revivo, Aviel Schwarz, Ben Graham. Subs not used: Danny Jacobs