SJFC vs Buntingford Town Reserves

Squad:

1. Tauseef Kanji
2. Imran Ladha
3. Hassan Padhani
4. Asif Rajabali
5. Hussein Pirbhai
6. Yaseen Valjy
7. Abbasali Merali
8. Baqer Abboud
9. Mahdi Shabbir
10. Mazharali Gulamhussein
11. Husein Gulamhussein
12. Amirali Merali
13. Ali Abbas Datoo

Stanmore came out and started the game very strongly. They seemed comfortable in their 3-1-4-2 formation, pressing in packs and dominating the game. After a period of pressure, a great ball from the right was met by a towering header at the back post by Amirali and Stanmore led 1-0. Shortly after, Amirali pickpocketed a Buntingford defender of possession, only to be hauled down in the area. He picked himself up to bury the ensuing penalty and give Stanmore a 2 goal cushion.

In a rare foray into the Stanmore half, Buntingford lumped a ball through for their striker to chase, who made the most of minimal contact in the penalty area by flinging himself onto the ground and calling for a penalty. The ref inexplicably pointed to the spot, allowing Buntingford a route back into game, which they took via a scuffed penalty and the assistance of the post. Stanmore kept their heads high and utilised the pace of their attackers to great effect, when a cracking ball by Dib landed on the feet of Hus Gul, who sprinted into the penalty area and clinically found the bottom corner.

The game and momentum switched completely at half time, with Stanmore struggling for rhythm and Buntingford controlling proceedings in the second half. Perhaps it was a lack of discipline or a degree of complacency or a lack of winning mentality, maybe a combination of all three, but the floodgates opened. A solid defence became porous, a sharp attack became predictable and in a matter of 20 mins, the score changed from 3-1 to 3-5. Buntingford helped themselves to a couple more goals over the course of the second half, with some incisive finishing, to go 7-3 up. Stanmore were awarded a late penalty when Mutz Blue was brought down after rounding the keeper, which Amirali duly dispatched to bring up his hat-trick. It was however a mere consolation, on a day which started with such promise but ended in deep deep disappointment.