Walsall Wood send Selston forth

Images kindly supplied by David Evans

Last Tuesday evening (6th October 2020) Walsall Wood F.C. entertained Selston F.C. at Walsall Wood. A belter of a match and home victory ensued, that roving reporter the young David Evans clearly enjoyed very much leaving his lyricism decidedly on form, much like his beloved team:

Walsall Wood F.C. 4 v 1 Selston F.C.
Tuesday 6th October 2020

The day had brought both sunshine and heavy rain. Sunshine to gladden the heart, and heavy rain showers to dampen the spirit. In the nearby fields the wondrous red deer were rejoicing as the rutting season approached its climax.

The verdant oak trees, now burnished gold by the changing season, glistened and sparkled after the rain. With glad hearts and souls good folk made their way to The Portal of Admission at the football ground, and, their faces covered in due deference to the Constraints of the Age, offered up their gold as they entered in.

The Hall of Temptation, with its mute attendees sitting in obedience, was quickly passed through by all who had travelled from near and far to thrill at beholding the Field of Honour, magnificent and splendid .

The stage was set. The cast were ready. The two teams, in casual ‘stand easy’ mode, emerged from the Keep. The Boys in Blue – from Selston – were making a long overdue, and much- anticipated welcome appearance here at the Theatre of Dreams.

The spectators watched in appreciation as the game unfolded. The fine real grass football field here at Oak Park provides sportsmen the ideal surface on which to employ all of the skills and moves of true football [David really won’t let the 3G bugbear go, will he? – Bob].

The first part of the game presented both sides the challenge of pace and skill. Walsall Wood’s Boys in Red passed smartly and accurately… As did Selston’s Boys in Blue. Moves and counter moves were swift and well executed. This was proving to be an enjoyable game to spectate, as it patently was for the hard-working and resolute players.

At around twenty minutes the home team scored the first goal to break through the unremitting logjam of Selston’s hard-pressed and determined defence. Within a few more minutes the visitors scored a fine cracker of a goal, delivered by their number 10 ( no match day programmes were available this evening, oddly )

The half time whistle signalled a much-needed respite for the players, and a time for them to reflect and contemplate. Meanwhile the spectators, some of whom had wisely brought their own refreshments and sustenance with them engaged in polite, sober conversations.

The second half of this increasingly meaningful fixture brought a change in nature and complexion. There was a heaviness in the visitor’s challenges. One inelegant incident saw a visiting player correctly booked for a foul challenge and then within a few minutes, being sent from the pitch for an identical foul challenge. Most unfortunate.

The Boys in Blue had now given themselves a tough task if they were to achieve a positive result. But the Men in Red were now on song. Their confidence rose by the minute. They were outplaying and out-running their understandably tired opponents.

The home team, in a superbly completed move, launched a thrusting attacking move, and the resulting goal was one I will never forget. Yes, it was that good. The paying spectators who were present rejoiced and thrilled. How would the Boys in Blue respond, now that they were trailing again?

The Wood were now relentless in their surging, attacking moves, putting the brave opponents to the test. There were increasingly desperate – clumsy – moves which brought a bouquet of yellow cards. And, perhaps inevitably, a penalty was awarded to the home side, from which another goal was scored.

The home side scored a further goal from one of the numerous corners – from a loose standing scrum of players the ball seemed to trick its way in to the back of the net. Just like that. Magic. The Wood could do no wrong this evening. It was their night.

It was also a match of immense significance for both sides. The home team’s well worked choreography matured to fullness this evening. A hat trick and a goal to the Men in Red and a hard, demanding performance by the gallant visitors.

Selston, to their immense credit, accepted decisions largely with good grace, and their initial accuracy and determination in the early part of the game had made the home side sit up and take notice. The Selston team were a side who, after having worked hard all day, then travelled the fifty or so miles to play game of football. I doff my hat in due respect to them.

The match ended and the players shook hands with their opponents, and in the distance a stag was heard faintly bellowing.

David Evans

My thanks to David for a great report – and for all those he selflessly writes and sends to me after every match. They really are popular, and a credit to David and the club.

Walsall Wood have a reputation for being a great, community spirited group of people and these reports demonstrate that – it’s an honour and joy to feature them here.

For the good of the Wood!

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