My first game of 2023, after being ill for a few days, with a heavy cold, saw me head on a Friday night, after working in Tottenham, to Myrak Park, home of Buckhurst Hill FC.
Myrak Park boasts a grass pitch and six high quality floodlights. The ground has a small clubhouse and bar as well as covered standing for 100 fans and a seated covered main stand facilitating another 100 seated fans. There was a decent crowd of 180 in the ground and plenty of atmosphere, despite the chill blowing across the field on the open side of the ground.
Buckhurst Hill FC came into the game in eleventh place in the Essex Senior League, just two points outside the play off places. Buckhurst’s goals have been scored this season by Hassan Nalbant (13 goals in 18 games) and Sulyeman Zudhu (10 goals in 10 games)
Their opponents tonight were Enfield FC, who sat in top place at kick off, eight points clear of second placed Redbridge FC. Enfield’s goals this season have come from Danny Norton (12 goals in 23 games) and Dwade James (9 goals in 22 games).
Despite the early pressure, mostly coming from Enfield FC, it was the home side, Buckhurst Hill FC, who took the lead first when, in the 25th minute, a great through ball by Ollie Williams was pounced on and finished with relative ease, by top scorer, Hassan Nalbant.
Just four minutes later, Enfield FC were level, when Aaron Green nodded the ball home, after a long throw in from Gavin Cockman. The referee ruled the challenge for the header fair, despite Buckhurst Hill FC protests and the scores were level at 1-1.
In the 40th minute Enfield were 1-2 ahead. Solomon Ofori took the ball on the right hand side of the area and curled a cross/shot over the keeper’s head into the net.
At the break the teams went in with just a goal separating them. Enfield FC had started to play with increased confidence as the half progressed but the home side looked strong going forward, on the counter attack.
In the 55th minute, a wonder strike, from 25 yards out, by Kieron Bishop, saw Enfield FC stretch their lead to 1-3.
In the 83rd minute, Enfield FC put the game out of sight, when Solomon Ofori finished inside the six yard box, to make it 1-4 on the night and to secure his brace.
In the 89th minute Enfield won a penalty, after a poor challenge in the box. Up stepped Louie Johnson to fire the ball home past Oliver Keil in the Buckhurst Hill goal, to make the score 1-5.
There was still time, on 90 minutes for a breakaway run and fine finish by Enfield’s Aaron Green, to make the final score 1-6.
At full time, it was the away team and deservedly, league leaders, Enfield FC who walked away with all three points. Buckhurst Hill FC had been competitive throughout, but their opponents had an extra gear when required.