“It was a close run thing.” Those immortal words from the Duke of Wellington after the Battle of Waterloo aptly summed up the game at Bays City Park.
Both teams were up for a game of football after last week’s cancellations and Forrest Hill had the advantage of a strong southerly gusting diagonally across the ground. Within the first ten minutes, Jack Beguely had headed off the line from a corner, while at the other end, Tamati Williams did well to save a Dan Peat drive.
Brent Fisher was just wide for Forrest Hill and Daniel Morgan-Howell was just beaten by the bounce of the ball following a cross from Jason McKeown before Bays took the lead in the 24th minute when Joses Nawo found McKeown with a defence splitting through ball. McKeown rounded the keeper and slotted home.
Forrest Hill were using the wind to advantage but some great defensive work from George Suri and Ryan Zoghby kept them at bay.
Right on half time, Aidan Gwilt made a great save from a corner but at the cost of another. Paul Rhodes took this one and with the assistance of the wind it eluded both Gwilt and the Bays defenders, dropping into the net to give Forrest Hill parity at the break.
The second half was just five minutes gone when Denver MacDonald, who had come on as a substitute only two minutes earlier, let fly from the edge of the penalty area. Gwilt appeared to have it covered, but somehow the ball eluded him, ending up in the back of the net.
Bays worked hard to take back the advantage with Morgan-Howell making several good runs down the flanks but no one was in position to take advantage.
The last fifteen minutes have often proved significant for Bays where their superior fitness has been a deciding factor and so it was again today. Nick Hyde had slipped a the vital moment when anticipating a Morgan-Howell cross and Williams had denied Dan Peat yet again, deflecting him for a corner. From the corner, Zoghby headed to Peat who smacked home the equaliser.
Another corner was forced two minutes later, Zoghby went up for the ball and headed over, but the whistle went and Bays were awarded a penalty for pushing in the box.
Morgan-Howell had his shot partly parried by Williams but reacted quickest forcing the ball over the line before the keeper could recover and Bays were back in the lead.
The attacks continued from both sides with Williams again denying Peat and Gwilt saving a header at the other end. With the game into the first minute of stoppage time, Morgan-Howell made another break down the flank, crossed to Peat who gave Williams no chance from close range.
Deep into stoppage time, McKeown was on the end of another Morgan-Howell cross but mishit.
A great team effort with Suri outstanding.
Team: Gwilt, Forrest, Suri, Zoghby, Beguely (Davis 75), Van Rooyen (Kenyon 64), Bresnahan, Nawo (Hyde 53), McKeown, Peat, Morgan-Howell
Scorers: McKeown 24, Peat 77, 91, Morgan-Howell 79
Last Modified on 27/07/2009 10:03