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29/12/2018 – REPORT – Tiptree Heath FC versus Gas Recreation FC





TIPTREE HEATH FC:                 2.                 GAS RECREATION FC:              3.


Date:               Saturday 29th December 2018.        

Venue:             Tolleshunt D’Arcy Playing Fields.


On a clear and relatively mild winters afternoon, this near top of the table clash once again led me over to Tolleshunt D’Arcy where home club, Tiptree Heath FC, sitting third in the table with games in hand, took on top team Gas Recreation FC, so a six-pointer, as they say. The pitch looked to be a bit heavy and would undoubtedly cut-up and players might have to be careful when trying to retain their balance on the soft surface.


Tiptree Heath FC with recent hard fought, victories over both West Bergholt FC {4-0} and Alresford Colne Rangers FC {3-2} in the last two weeks, this was scheduled to be another testing game for the home team who have acquitted themselves well in their first full season in the ESBFL, Premier Division. This was also the first time I had watched Gas Recreation play in a league game this season, the reports I have heard or read, so far, are that they continue to be the team to beat, despite numerous player defections, but Manager, Simon Hayward for this game had a real headache of who to leave out and with such competitiveness to play by the players its maybe a nice problem to have!


The appointed match official was Michael Jarvis would be assisted by Ben Ridge and Keith Mitchell, personally I though the referee was excellent throughout a compelling match, a couple of late but correctly applied cautions, but overall this game was played at a high tempo with plenty of commitment and chances.


After the “Respect” handshake it was Tiptree Heath who kicked off, but Gas Recreation won possession to gain an early corner as Dale forced McIlwaine to concede, from which Firkins found Gregory whose shot was well saved by keeper, Hawkins, diving at full stretch. Gas Recreation continued their pressure with Bulmer shooting against Grimshaw to gain another corner, taken by Bulmer with Hewes heading over at the near post, then Taylor (L) found Bulmer only for Grimshaw to again make a crucial tackle for a corner and with only five minutes gone it was the visitors who had started more positively. Taylor (L) played the ball wide to Bulmer who played in Firkins whose shot was too high and with Tiptree failing to pick up the opposition a ball from Gregory fell to Ogunsayna whose long deep cross should have been fielded by keeper, Hawkins but his timing when advancing from his goal-line, was way out and fortunately the ball flew wide at the far post. On ten minutes Machin fouled Chesney, Scillitoe took the free-kick to Chester whose first time shot forced keeper, Mahoney to tip he ball over the cross-bar. A foul by Hunt on Ogunsayna led to a cleared free-kick from where Chesney broke forward to find Hunt with the ball eventually reaching Knill-Jones but defender, West intervened.

After fifteen minutes, Tiptree Heath had been largely outplayed but there were signs that they had found more confidence by not conceding a goal, and when Chesney found Knill-Jones his pass to Hazell was scuffed well wide but at least an opportunity. At the other end a corner from Bulmer was headed up and out towards Taylor (L) whose left footed volley grazed the top of the cross-bar as it flew over the goal and maybe on another day the visitors would have been two goals ahead. That changed on twenty-two minutes when Hazell played the ball wide to the left side to Chester whose eventual cross was headed firmly home by HARRY HAZELL, a goal, definitely, against the run, of play! There followed a corner taken by Chester which was cleared upfield to Taylor (L) who found Dale, unmarked, just outside the penalty area and when he let fly the ball was destined for the far right, far corner, until Tollhurst stuck his head in the way to concede a corner.

A throw-in from Machin fell to Dale who held off Tollhurst, but the shot flew straight to keeper, Hawkins, and it was now apparent that the Tiptree Heath midfield were now more competitive prompted by Chester and Chesney. On thirty-five minutes Gas replaced the injured West with Jones, with Ogunsayna moving into midfield and Taylor (L) dropping into defence. McIlwaine made a timely tackle on Dale and as Tiptree Heath moved forward an uncharacteristic mistake by Taylor (L) almost played in Hazell who forced keeper, Mahoney to save at his feet and when the ball bounced up it hit Hazell and drifted wide of the goal. Another goal for Tiptree Heath arrived on thirty-nine minutes when the Gas defence called for an off-side decision, which was waved aside, and HARRY HAZELL ran through onto a ball from Chester, and despite an attempted tackle from Taylor (L) the forward ran on to score. Needless to say, some tasty but fair tackles came in from both teams, but some good football was also more pleasing to watch, and with a two goal, cushion Tiptree Heath now looked more comfortable. With five minutes to half-time Knill-Jones drifted past three Gas Recreation players but failed to find the target then with a minute to half-time the ball was in the back of the Gas Recreation net. Chester had worked the ball into Hazell who was stopped by keeper, Mahoney, but when Hazell played the loose ball wide to Chesney he swept the ball into the unguarded net, but was adjudged to have been of-side, the decision being made by the referee. A late surge forward by Gas Recreation led to Hewes sending over a corner that Taylor (L) met with his head and just as the ball was about to find the top corner of the net up-popped Abrehart-Briggs who cleared with a fine header off the goal-line. The half ended with Tiptree Heath being two goals ahead having weathered the early Gas Recreation onslaught where in truth they should have been maybe, two goals behind before snatching the lead.


HALF-TIME:    2 – 0.  


Gas Recreation were quickly out for the second half and straight from the kick-off Bulmer set up Dale whose snap-shot from six yards hit keeper, Hawkins, the ball being cleared by Tollhurst, who was having a real battle against Bulmer who then laid the ball back to Taylor (L) with defender Grimshaw clearing the excellent cross from the left side. On fifty-five minutes Gas Recreation replaced Bulmer with Page and whether you can construe this to be a tactical managerial change or just luck, it seemed to start the Gas Recreation recovery. A corner on the left side taken by Hewes, was punched high and clear by keeper, Hawkins, Dale launched the ball high into the area once again and despite keeper, Hawkins again opting to punch clear the ball fell to JACK GREGORY who buried the ball into the back of the net from fifteen-yards out. Taylor (L) made a fine tackle on Chester as he ran through, any other outcome could have been costly, and Hooper was spoken too by the referee seemingly for dissent from an earlier decision.

At sixty minutes the complexion of this game had changed, Tiptree Heath, from being two goals up were now pegged back by one, this being an open invitation for the visitors to press forward again, and again. Defender Tollhurst was injured when clearing a loose ball that had cannoned back off his keeper after Taylor (L) found Dale and on sixty-two minutes Firkins passed inside to JACK GREGORY and he despatched a hard and low shot that beat the keeper’s dive low to the left side, the equaliser, a goal that had been threatened, and this game, was definitely on and you could sense that this game now had an inevitability about it! Ogunsayna made a run down the right side, Abrehart-Briggs headed clear for a corner, taken by Hewes, headed clear by Tollhurst to JACK GREGORY who stepped outside Grimshaw before smashing the ball into the back of the net from twenty-five yards to seal a fine comeback, three goals in twenty minutes.

With their noses in front, Gas Recreation could now relax and use their experience to out-fox a willing, able and committed Tiptree Heath team, Hooper conceded a corner which allowed Ogunsayna some time to receive treatment as Tiptree Heath pushed for an equaliser themselves. On eighty-two minutes Tiptree Heath replaced Knill-Jones with Speller who moved into defence with the injured Tollhurst moving up front. Dale fouled Grimshaw and was spoken too, a corner from Scillitoe found the head of McIlwaine whose firm header was destined for the back of the net before being cleared off the goal-line by Gregory. When Page lost control of the ball his attempt to regain possession led to the first caution of the game when he fouled Chester. Dale and Jones combined to set up Gregory again drifting into space but his shot on the turn was expertly tipped over the cross-bar by keeper, Hawkins, then when play resumed after the corner, Hewes chased back to tackle Chester, from behind, leading to the second caution of the match. Tiptree Heath replaced, firstly, Hunt with Thurston then secondly Tollhurst limped off making way for Turner and in the final, seventh, minute of time added on Chester hit the outside of the near post, but in reality, this game had effectively been lost thirty minutes or so earlier!

FULL TIME:     2 – 3.


This top of the table clash did live up to expectations, Gas Recreation should have been two goals ahead before falling two goals behind as Tiptree Heath weathered the storm and then applied a two goal, counter, and had another disallowed. As expected Gas Recreation came out all guns blazing for the second half, one goal, then two and a third, all for Gregory turned this match around in their favour and once ahead were never going to relinquish that lead, despite Tiptree Heath keeping to their pass and move philosophy.


Now for my Player-of-the-Match choice, for Tiptree Heath, still missing the goal threat of Green and Ward, initially defended well with McIlwaine, Chester, with two assists, and Chesney to the fore supplying Hazell, with two goals. For Gas Recreation, captain Taylor (L), apparently, he has played over three hundred games for his club, epitomised his team’s overall effort with another outstanding display in midfield before doing likewise in defence. Up front Bulmer put in a typical big shift, but it was the midfield were Gas Recreation won this game, Dale, Firkins, Hewes and especially Gregory with three goals and some good defending did most of the damage, so no question where my selection goes this week.


On behalf of the ESBFL may I wish you all a Happy New Year.





TIPTREE HEATH FC:   Colours:            Green & Black Shirts, Black Shorts and Green Socks.

Paddi Hawkins., Pacey Grimshaw., Ryan Scillitoe., Charlie Abrehart-Briggs., Jack Tollhurst., Gary McIlwaine., Joe Chester., Jamie Chesney (C)., Ryan Knill-Jones., Harry Hazell., Callum Hunt.


Manager:                      Steven Chester.

Assistant Manager:       Gary Wood.

Used Substitutes:          Toby Turner., Luke Thurston., Reece Speller.

Unused Substitutes:      Cameron Ward.


GAS RECREATION FC:           Colours:            Red & Black Shirts., Black Shorts and Black Socks

Lee Mahoney., Jonathan Ogunsayna., Gary Machin., Jack Gregory., Scott Hoper., Dean West., Harry Hewes., Luke Taylor (C)., Ryan Dale., John Bulmer., Asten Firkins


Manager:                      Simon Hayward.

Assistant Manager:       Calvin Firkins.

Used Substitutes:          Scott Page., Nicky Jones.

Unused Substitutes:      Ryan Taylor., Jack Stoneman., Calvin Firkins




Referee:                       Michael Jarvis.

Assistant Referee:         Ben Ridge

and                              Keith Mitchell.



Player-of-the-Match:            Jack GREGORY           (GAS RECREATION FC)




Additional Reporting – FACEBOOK (x2) & TWITTER



This season the ESBFL is widening its match-day reporting coverage, in addition to a full report written by Brian Reed, the league has enlisted the help of a young volunteer, Spencer Hume, who will also attend games using Facebook and Twitter to communicate up-to-date information and replicate other match reports, please make him welcome.





Reminder to Club / Fixture Secretaries


Once again this season the fixtures, results, referees and “kick-off” times will be shown automatically on “The FA Full-Time / The Whole Game System” ( ) but would all Club / Fixture Secretaries please advise any agreed changes, as required, to Alison Willmore ( ) especially for evening games and for those matches being played under floodlights etc.


KO is 2:00pm in:              January

KO is 2:30pm in:              February

KO is 3:00pm from:         March to end of season


Cup Matches:

Kick-Off times for ESBFL cup matches, are generally 30 minutes earlier than those shown above but check competition rules beforehand.


Kick-Off times for Essex County Football Association cup matches are published on the ECFA web-site.

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Clubs are reminded that the following documents are all available on this website under Clubs / Documents etc:


ESBFL Handbook,

Player Registration Sheet,

Player “Signed-On-Match-Day” Form,

Player Transfer Form,

Match Postponement Form,

Referee – Low Mark Form                                          Please report via “FA Full-Time”

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