03 Mar 2013
Tonbridge 3 Charterhouse 4

Remarkable comeback gives Charterhouse unlikely victory

Tonbridge 3 Charterhouse 4

Charterhouse showed both sides of their Jekyll and Hide character at Tonbridge on Saturday 2nd March. For the first half of their match against their old rivals they were simply awful. They were lethargic, disjointed and flaccid and only some excellent goalkeeping from Pavel Degtiarev kept the score to a respectable 0-2 at the break.
This should take nothing away from Tonbridge who were skillful, spirited and organized as they launched wave after wave of attack. Ironically, the hosts took the lead just as Charterhouse were beginning to find a foothold in the game. A reverse stick shot flew across Degtiarev’s goal and was going wide until a Tonbridge forward arrived in the nick of time to turn it in. One soon became two as the beleaguered Degtiarev made his only mistake of a long day allowing a Tonbridge drag flick from a short corner to slip between his legs and into the net.
Half-time could not come soon enough and stern words were exchanged at the break. Throughout the first half Charterhouse had been unable to string two passes together and had gifted the ball to the opposition on countless occasions and often in dangerous areas.
The second half began with Charterhouse showing greater determination and intensity, but this was certainly matched by their opponents who scented a comprehensive victory. After ten minutes of attrition, Tonbridge scored again when their striker weaved a mazy run into the Charterhouse circle and fired a reverse stick shot into the top corner. This should surely have been enough to break what little resolve Charterhouse had shown and there had certainly been little in the match up to tat point to indicate that the visitors would do any more than surrender meekly.
This they may well have done had they not scored almost immediately. Rory Peplow slipped the ball to Ed Iley at a short corner and the latter found the bottom corner of the goal.
An extraordinary transformation came over the Charterhouse team at this point as they suddenly seemed to realise that they could make a game of it after all. At the same time that dreadful element of doubt crept into the previously self-assured minds of the home team. Could they really lose from this position? There was a consequent change in the style of play of both teams with Charterhouse suddenly taking the initiative and Tonbridge seeking to cling on to what they had won so easily.
Shortly afterwards Ashley Beddows pulled the ball across the Tonbridge circle and there was Gus Giddins to strike his first ever goal for the school at any level. The momentum was truly with Charterhouse now and from their next attack harry Coe won the ball in the left forward pocket and dragged it across goal where Augustin Wauters was on hand to lift the ball into the roof of the net.
After such a comeback one would have been forgiven for believing that there could only be one winner now, but Tonbridge are made of stern stuff and the game flowed from end to end wit both sides creating and missing chances. It became increasingly clear that whoever could score the next goal would almost certainly win the match.
And so it transpired. With less than five minutes left Coe robbed a defender and slipped the ball to Peplow on the right side of the circle. The Charterhouse midfielder transferred the ball immediately to Huw Reynolds who fired home from the top of the circle. There was still time for Degtiarev to pull off another fine save before the final whistle confirmed that Charterhouse had brought of a remarkable comeback. As the visitors left the field reveling in their great escape, the poor home side were left stunned and with the uncomfortable sensation of having been robbed.
It had been a game riddled with errors but certainly not short on drama and both sides will look back on it and wonder how it had all actually come about.

Link: http://www.charterhousesports.org.uk/default.asp?id=77