Tough game and well fought draw
Both sides played very hard, but very fair to the final whistle. Plenty of positives for Bradfield to take from the game after a tough start to the season,
Old Bradfieldians 2 - 2 Old Tonbridgians.
The home side Bradfield started off the better side against a well drilled and highly organised
Tonbridge side. The poor weather led to a relentless pace in the first twenty minutes, with both
sides zipping the ball around. Despite this, Bradfield managed to dominate the ball, finding space
in-between Tonbridge’s defensive and midfield lines, Will Louis dropping in from the wide right to give support to the attacking midfield, comprised of Tom Martin and Nick Watts. After a few good opportunities for Bradfield Will Louis picked up the ball deep in the Tonbridge half. Tom Edwards, playing his full debut for the club as the central striker, showed he had not lost any of his attacking movement, running of his man and through on goal after a neat pass from Louis. A tidy Edwards finish capped off a decent first twenty-five minutes for Bradfield. 1-0 Bradfield.
An unfortunate injury to Matt Slater just minutes after the first goal of the game left Bradfield
struggling for structure at the back. Tonbridge started to get more on the ball, spraying long balls
over the Bradfield full-backs heads. The pressure told and ten minutes after scoring, Bradfield were on the end of a wonder strike from a Tonbridge midfielder, who connected sweetly with a half volley from a cross on the edge of Bradfield’s box, smashing off the crossbar past the hopeless Shelvin in goal. 1-1.
Bradfield’s struggles to retain possession was offering more chances for Tonbridge to exploit the
high-line of Bradfield’s defence, and more diagonal long balls continued. Not long before half time an excellent ball from a Tonbridge midfielder found its way to the head of the Tonbridge left winger at the back post. The header was nicely taken and Bradfield found themselves going into half time down, despite having played well for the majority of the first half. 2-1 Tonbridge.
The first twenty minutes of the second half were much the same as the last twenty in the first, with Tonbridge bombarding the Bradfield defence with some well-crafted moves and long balls. Shelvin was magnificent in the Bradfield goal, making some vital stops to deny further Bradfield misery. The new, highly promising centre-back partnership of Harry Martin and Miles Covers dealt with the bombardment well, giving Bradfield a platform to get back into the game. And so they did. Bradfield found more control in the game in the last fifteen minutes, managing to carve out opportunities. Deep runs from right-back Jamie Cox gave Tonbridge a problem and soon the pressure told, Tom Martin scoring an excellent goal ten minutes from time, thumping it into the top left corner from just inside the box. 2-2. After this goal the game became very stretched, both sides having chances to win the game. Both sides played very hard, but very fair to the final whistle, 2-2 being the final score. Plenty of positives for Bradfield to take from the game after a tough start to the season, however still a lot that needs to be worked on in order to achieve the high level of football the club wants to reach. Old Bradfieldians 2 - 2 Old Tonbridgians