Gibbons Field, Hollington
Admission and Programme: None
Attendance: 78 (head count)
Match Rating: 3
I had visited the Gibbons Field at the end of last season, when the planned game was called off and an inter club game was played instead. Today, the formidable metal windows covers were opened and a clubhouse with tea bar was available.
This was the last fixture in the East Sussex League Division One, and the mathematics were simple. Hollington United's second team needed to win today to become champions of the Division, but a draw or defeat would mean that Ore Athletic would claim the title, as they were one point above Hollington with a better goal difference. Hollington will not be promoted though, as their first team is in the division above. Mountfield went into this game in fourth place, and a win would give them a third place finish and probable promotion.
As I arrived during the half time interval, Hollington were well on the way to getting the win they needed, as they were 3-1 up. Hollington had gone 2-0 up inside the first ten minutes, Mountfield pulled a goal back before Hollington restored their two goal lead by half time. The second half was surprisingly even although Hollington did miss some excellent chances to further extend their lead. However, on 59 minutes, Mountfield were awarded a penalty when a shot was blocked with raised arms. The penalty was scored low down the centre by Peter Matthews to put the destination of the title back in doubt. Indeed the game was very much in the balance now and it wouldn't have been a shock had Mountfield scored an equaliser. Although Hollington were not playing well, they still had the best chances to score, most notably on 75 minutes when the keeper just managed to get fingertips onto a vicious shot from the edge of the box and the ball struck the crossbar before going over, and in the dying minutes, a powerful shot at the near post was somehow saved. But at the whistle it was job done, as the Hollington players broke into a chorus of “Championes, Championes”.