3s undone by set-pieces in spirited display at Dulwich

Old Alleynians 3rd XI
6 : 3
Old Harrovians 3rd XI
  • September 26th 2020, Dulwich College Playing Fields, 1pm
  • Division 4
  • Referee: Steve Redfern
  • Weather: Sunny, breezy
  • Pitch: Fair
No. Starting XI Goals Yellow & Red Cards Subs On/Off
1 Tom Mitchell
2 Michael Brooks
3 Adam Graham 50'
4 Ed Nicholson (c)
5 Anson Lo 70'
6 Daniel Graham
7 Olly Roberts
8 Matt Bailey 30'
9 Ali Buckley 30'(p), 40'(p)
10 Michael Watford 40'
11 William Glover 10'
12 Oliver Corbidge 30'
13 Will Grinstead 30'
14 Tarquin Strickland 40'

Despite a much-improved performance from a fortnight ago, the OHAFC 3s once more suffered defeat, this time losing 6-3 away to the Old Alleynians 3s. A scrappy game, played on a tight pitch at the Trevor Bailey Sports Ground in Dulwich against a fired-up Alleynians 3s side was level at the break, the two teams sharing six goals between them. A couple of early goals in the second half gave the hosts the upper hand and despite a strong showing from the visitors, a sixth goal late on sealed the win for the unbeaten Alleynians.

The OHAFC 3s travelled south determined to turn in a far better display than the one that had seen them mauled 12-0 by Cholms 3s in their first fixture of the fledgling season. It was encouraging to see a full squad of fourteen make the trip, with a trio of OHAFC debutants: Will Grinstead, Matt Bailey and Tarquin Strickland.

And things looked even rosier for the visitors when they opened the scoring after just ten minutes, Will Glover scoring his first ever goal for the club with an excellent strike from just inside the box. But the Alleynians, who had won their first two games of the season, struck back almost immediately, and with half an hour gone had opened up a 3-1 lead: the hosts' leveller was a header from a free-kick by their towering centre-half, the second came from a breakaway that ended with a shot somehow squirming through Tom Mitchell's legs and the third was a repeat of the first, another header from the centre-half, this time from a corner.

Harrow heads failed to drop however, and spurred on by some questionable antics from the opposition, they hit back in style to draw level prior to the break. Having conceded the third, the Blues broke upfield straight from kick-off and earned themselves a penalty which Ali Buckley comfortably converted. Remarkably, just five minutes later and referee Steve Redfern was pointing to the spot again for another foul, this on Will Glover. Again, Buckley held his nerve and the scores were level at 3-3.

Corbidge, Grinstead and Strickland were all given their first taste of the action, but the visitors suffered a setback when they conceded two early goals in the second half, the first most unlucky following an Alleynians break that ended with a shot deflecting off about four players before ending up in the Harrow net, the second yet another header from the giant centre-back, who completed his fairly unique hat-trick when he nodded in from a corner.

Again, the visitors fought back, Will Glover saw his rising strike tipped over the bar and Strickland and Dan Graham causing plenty of problems for the Alleynians rearguard. But a late sixth for the hosts sealed the points, despite the OHAFC being denied what appeared a decent shout for a third penalty.

Despite the defeat, there were a number of encouraging performances from the team and it should be noted that the Blues' first two games have come against sides that have won all six of their fixtures so far. The side now return to the Hill for a meeting with the Old King's Scholars and what should be, on paper at least, a good chance to earn their first points of the season.