JC MSFL DIVISION FOUR
TEMPLE FORTUNE B 2 ATHLETIC BILBAUM 2
Temple Fortune B's 100 per cent start to the season was ended, as a late equaliser gave Athletico Bilbaum a 2-2 draw at Gosling in a bruising battle.
Goal kings Terry Jeffries and Edward Green bagged braces as high-flying Fortune B and Bilbaum finished honours.
With bags packed, passports to hand and a brand spanking new set of dinosaur embroidered kits, the Baums set sail northwards for the far away land of Welwyn Garden City ... to play Temple Fortune B.
Although the honours were even, it was a performance to be proud of from the Baums. Every player in the green and white gave his all throughout and on another day the result could well have swung in our favour.
Fortune are a big physical side and it is no surprise they are doing very well this season, but apart from a couple of first half goals from set pieces in very quick succession, they rarely threatened the Bilbaum goal.
Fortune took the lead midway through the first half thanks to a superb 35-yard free kick from player-manager Jeffries which sailed over the keeper and into the top corner.
The home side quickly extended their lead, when Dave Sawyer flicked on a long throw and Jeffries was once again on hand to tap home at the far post, taking his tally to 11 for the season.
When it came to playing football, there was only one side in it, and despite going two goals down, heads stayed high in the Bilbaum ranks and their team spirit and desire to win never wavered.
Bilbaum came out strongly in the second half and pulled a goal back through a nifty turn in the box from Green, things took a sudden turn for the worse, as Benjy Aarons-Richardson was involved in a nasty clash of heads with Fortune's Dave Sawyer that saw the game stopped whilst an ambulance was called. Thankfully we are happy to report that Benjy was given the all clear to go home with no serious repercussions and has hopefully been enjoying a hearty bowl of chicken soup with his feet up. Up until that point Benjy had played a stormer and we wish him well and that he makes a speedy recovery. Sawyer battled on bravely with a bump on his forehead.
To add further misery to the Bilbaum camp, the team had now made all its substitutions and for the last 15 minutes it was to be 10 vs 11 with a goal deficit to turn around. The response was superb. Everyone dug deep and went looking for equaliser
Fortune are a tough team to break down and it was clear they didn't want to give away their lead, but after a period of pressure from the Baums, with Bell and Beir in particular summoning new found energy sources, and as the clock edged towards full time, marksman Green popped up in the box to poke home a late equaliser for a very well deserved point.
Bilbaum player-manager Mark Pasha told JC Sport: "Overall it was an exciting game of football played in very good spirit by both teams especially in light of a couple of long stoppages for injury. COYB!"
Fortune assissant-manager Adam Glekin said: "Obviously it was disappointing to concede so late and only come away with a draw after leading 2-0, but you can't really deny they deserved a point.
"It was a tough but fair game, and I'd like to wish their lad Benjy a speedy recovery."