I came out, on a bright Sunday morning, to the Elm Tree Ground, Paddock Wood for a West Kent Sunday League, Division 3 fixture, between Paddock Wood and AFC Green Court.
Paddock Wood have struggled this season, languishing at kick off, in twelfth place with just three wins and eleven defeats from their fourteen games. I was expecting goals as the Paddock Wood defence have leaked 60 goals already this season, an average of over four goals per game. AFC Green Court have fared better this season, with five wins, two draws and 6 defeats from their thirteen matches, and as a result they sit in seventh place.
The game was evenly fought for the first 30 minutes with neither side creating a clear cut chance. Paddock Wood did, however, have the majority of the play and it was not a surprise when, in the 37th minute their number ten broke free, after a poorly timed back pass, to take the ball around the keeper and score to make it 1-0.
On the stroke of half time AFC Green Court were back in the match, from nowhere, when a long whipped shot, from virtually the right touchline, went straight across the Paddock Wood Keeper and into the net to make it 1-1. Sadly the goal was that good, it outdid my camera technique, but I have the celebration photographed below!
The second half started with AFC Green Court coming forward with much more confidence. In the 51st minute AFC Green Court went ahead with another amazing long range effort, which almost, but not quite, managed to fool my filming skills!
In the 68th minute the away side went two in front with yet another great goal to put AFC Green Court 1-3 ahead.
In the 81st minute, the deficit was back to one goal, as Paddock Wood made it 2-3 with a well worked goal, which raised their hopes of getting something out of the game.
Paddock Wood then went all out in attack, but with four minutes left, had a player sent off for dissent and a push on the referee. This effectively ended the tie as almost immediately the away side used the advantage of an extra player, to make the final score 2-4.
At full time it was AFC Green Court who left with three points. They closed the gap on the top six, while Paddock Wood should feel disappointed today as this was a game they could have got a result from.