Shenfield High School

The year 7 boys of Shenfield High School started 2013 with a superb display of skill, courage and determination. In what were difficult conditions for football, both teams did their best to get the ball down and play. The game ended 5-5 with Shenfield scoring 3 goals in the last 10 minutes to secure a thoroughly deserved point.

The New Year bought a new focus to the year 7 team and after an inspirational day with Great British Long Jump Champion JJ Jegede, they put their words into action. Captain for the day Josh Portway set the standard with not only his performance but his attitude as well. He led from the front, with all of his players battling for the cause. The game started slowly, but Shenfield under strict instructions to not concede, were doing so well.

Despite this, the very strong following wind helped the Boswells team and a great through ball caught the defence too high. The visitors quickly went 2-0 up after a mix up with the goalkeeper and his defence and a similar story was unfolding.

However, if Boswells were expecting an easy ride, they were very much mistaken. Shenfield continued to play all the football and soon pulled one back through the inspirational Portway, who fired the ball in to the bottom corner. With the wind still playing a significant factor, Boswells nicked another, only for Shenfield to reply immediately with another well taken goal by Portway. Just as the half time whistle was being blown, another unfortunate error at the back meant the home side trailed 4-2, which was not by any means a disaster.

Shenfield started well in the second half only to concede a yet another sloppy goal and the writing seemed to be on the wall at 5-2 down. But, the boys refused to drop their heads and their improved willingness and determination to win shone through. Josh Portway completed a memorable performance with his 3rd and a well-deserved hatrick and Shenfield had a chance.

With the wind on their backs and confidence building, the home side surged forward and began to dominate proceedings. With all this attacking came big gaps in the defence, however some brave defending by Tommy Jackson and outstanding goalkeeping from Adam Bundock kept their team in it. In fact, across the whole pitch players were doing busting a gut for each other, the impressive and fearless Harry Emery made important tackles throughout. The ever reliable ‘pocket rocket’ Ryan Patterson continued his excellent form with another solid game at right back, bursting forward to assist Ollie Mitchell out wide.

With less than 10 minutes on the clock, Shenfield pressure and patient build up play led to a host of openings that could have seen them draw level. And eventually they pulled another back through the impressive Frankie Wright, who made an instant impact after coming on. Frankie took his goal well and with 5 minutes left, Shenfield sensed an epic comeback was on the cards.

With barely a minute left on the clock Shenfield were awarded a free kick just outside the box from a tight angle. Up stepped Jimmy Sains whose quiet game burst into life, he struck the ball beautifully and the ball nestled in the top corner to seal an unbelievable fight back.

The goal sparked scenes of jubilation and seconds after this, the final whistle sounded and Shenfield were up and running. A brilliant game of football, played in great spirit with credit to both sides. However a lot of credit must go the whole Shenfield team who all played their part including the subs, Connor and Tommy who both made a real difference after coming on.

MOM was tricky, with Tommy Jackson and Ryan Patterson putting in great performances; however for his exceptional attitude and hatrick, my choice was Josh Portway, despite him having better hair than me!

Team Shenfield!

Mr Bennett