It was blowing a gale on Saturday as Adel began their defence of their top spot in North East Division Two. With just the four points separating the two sides there was all to play for in this match that promised to be one for the neutrals.

Brigg had obviously arrived at the War Memorial ready for battle and straight from the whistle showed the reasoning they are fast becoming a bogey team for Adel, never allowing the Adel team to settle into their game and closing down the ball at every opportunity. Adel have played almost every game this season at a pace that has caught their opposition unprepared, but it looked like the tables had turned as it was Brigg who were the aggressors in the early stages. Every time that an Adel player had the ball, they were quickly closed down by a number of green shirts putting them onto the back foot. As the game progressed, it began to settle into a nice rhythm of Adel attacking and Brigg putting players behind the ball waiting for that opportunity to counter. Their counters weren’t having the effect they wanted however, as the back line of Adel were well up to the task.

The home side were smothering Brigg’s counters nicely and using them as a springboard for the same type of game as fast passes began to open the field of play.

Both teams were struggling in front of goal, however, as mistouches under pressure were keeping the score deadlocked. The goalkeepers were called into action more and more as it was starting to become clear that first blood was going to be essential for either side.

The break, when it came wasn’t so much against the run of play as it was totally out of the blue. Another strong attack from Adel looked to be cleared, but it never got beyond the second line of attack, and after concealing his surprise at being briefly unpressured, Will Purdy showed fantastic composure to push the ball past a despairing dive from the Brigg keeper.

In normal matches, the first goal is the start of the floodgates opening and Adel taking control of the competition never to let it go again. This was far from a normal competition however, as Brigg, despite their disappointment in going behind stuck to their game plan – a goal down but not out.

A strong drive into the Adel area saw the umpire award a short corner for an overly physical challenge, the less neutral in the crowd shouted their disapproval, but the decision was never going to be changed. The first short corner was defended, but it led to another as the ball caught a defender’s foot. Unfortunately, this one wasn’t defended quite as efficiently, as there seemed to be a slight miscommunication between the last defender and keeper – each thinking the other had the shot covered until it went past both and rested in the back of the net.

Back on level terms, and Adel were in a situation they hadn’t been in this season – glad to hear the whistle for the half time break.

Coach Ball obviously had some words of wisdom to impart to his side, but it looked like it was the team talk of his opposite number that had the bigger effect as it was only a few minutes into the second half when Brigg took the lead. Adel were understandably deflated by going behind but were never going to roll over and give up. They threw everything at Brigg, changing their formation attempting to provide that needed spark.

Adel then suffered the indignity of having a short corner awarded against them as the final whistle blew, meaning they had to defend the set piece knowing they would have no time for a counter. The corner wasn’t converted but celebrations in the visitor camp began anyway.

The game had ended, Brigg had done the double over Adel and put a huge dent in the promotion hopes of the team in orange. A disappointing result.

Adel must now look towards the coming weekend as they have a double header with both games against Driffield, who currently sit in third place in the league. Driffield also play Brigg on the final day of the season, and as such will have a huge say in the final league positions and which club has their name on the title.

Men’s 4s take the only point of the day for the men’s section. A very exciting game of two strong forward lines and some… questionable defending meant the game ended 6-6 with every goal being equalised throughout. Very exciting for our two spectators that stuck around but I channelled my inner Joe Morris and nearly had a stroke in frustration. Goals were split between Paul Allan x2, Mark Anderson x2, David Mattinson for his first goal of the season which was so good words cannot describe the pace it went with, and finally James Pellow. MotM to Jack Martyn Stevenson for a great return to goalkeeping since coming back from injury and DotD to Nic Crocker for passing to the CF. Shame it was Tadcasters

The omens weren’t great when Mens 6s were greeted at abbeydale by an injured player yelling in pain clutching his dislocated shoulder. Getting an ambulance cost valuable pre match warm up time so we quickly went behind to a determined Hallam team out for revenge. Long story short, we played pretty well, had a few shots well saved by their keeper, and they scored a couple of seriously lucky goals. 3-0 at half time.
Second half went better, they didn’t score but alas Andy Miles did, unfortunately in his own goal thanks to a wicked deflection. Made MOM straightforward though. Some really good performances from Greg Martland, Nick Edwards in midfield after Matthew Lilley broke himself again, and MOM Matt ashford had a great game in defence.
Thanks joe root for the best showers in the league and decent teas as well!

The Ladies 4s braved the weather on Saturday against Northallerton at home. Game started slow, with the majority of people confused about what to do with the wind. Teams were evenly matched, with one player making there game play. With this figured out we tried to keep the ball away from her!
Northallerton managed to win a penalty corner, in which they converted. Making the score 1-0 to them. At half time with a good team talk, we realised all was still to play for. From the whistle we went out fighting!! Bunx received the ball and ran the whole pitch, out skilling the majority, with a sneeky slip to Meg who scored! This made the score 1-1! With this north came back fighting again but we held out, defending a few more corners along with some open shots!
We managed to counter attack and again Meg scored another goal!! The final score was 2-1! A well fought match and a well dereved win!!!

Adel results in full:

Men’s Ones 1 Brigg 2

Men’s Twos 3 Bradford 5

Men’s Threes 1 Brigg 4

Men’s Fours 6 Tadcaster 6

Men’s Fives1 City of York 2

Men’s Sixes 0 Sheffield Hallam 4

Ladies Ones 3 Leeds 4

Ladies Twos 3 Selby 0

Ladies Fours 2 Northallerton 1

Ladies Fives 0 Selby 5

Photos by John Heald