The Mitcham Cluster Best Team Football Competition took place on Thursday 19th November 2015 at St Mark’s Academy CofE. Ten schools from the cluster attended the competition: Beecholme, Bond, Gorringe Park, Links, Lonesome, St Mark’s, St Thomas of Canterbury and Stanford while Sherwood and William Morris brought two teams. With twelve teams taking part, we have broken another Mitcham Cluster record as this was the highest amount of teams entered for a Best Team Football Competition to date, so thank you again to all schools for attending.

As there were twelve teams, the were split into two groups with all teams playing each other in their group and one final match to determine their final position. The groups were as follows:

Group 1

Group 2

Bond

Beecholme

Gorringe Park

Links

St Thomas of Canterbury

Stanford

Lonesome

St Mark’s

William Morris B

Sherwood B

Sherwood A

William Morris A

 

Unfortunately, the weather gods were not in our favour as the rain started from the onset of teams arriving right to the final whistle of the last match. However, this did not deter teams from getting stuck in to every game they played.

The first round kicked off with Bond v Gorringe Park, St Thomas v Lonesome and Beecholme v Links. Gorringe Park began their winning streak with a 1-0 win over Bond, St Thomas managed to sneak a goal past Lonesome to win the game 1-0 and Beecholme and Links both showed some excellent defensive displays as the game ended in a 0-0 draw.

The second round saw William Morris B v Sherwood A, Stanford v St Mark’s and Sherwood B v William Morris A. William Morris B gave Sherwood A a good run for their money as the game ended in a very tight 0-0 draw. Stanford got their tournament off to a flying start with a 2-0 win over St Mark’s, meanwhile William Morris A scored two mighty goals to take a 2-0 win over Sherwood B.

Group 1 started to take shape with Gorringe Park steaming ahead winning all their games up until they met Sherwood A in their final fixture. Despite playing an undefeated side, Sherwood A managed to score a brilliant goal, and played very tactically defensively for the rest of the game so the final score ended in a 1-0 win to Sherwood A. Sherwood A had had many draws in their fixtures so far, so this win was surely going to help their overall point score in the table! Meanwhile, St Thomas were not far behind Sherwood A having drawn a few of their matches. Unknowingly, it came down to St Thomas’ final fixture against William Morris B to determine who would finish second in the group.

At the bottom end of the table, Bond, Lonesome and William Morris B showed no signs of giving up and battled against the rain and fierce winds scoring goals and grabbing some well needed draws and wins.

In Group 2, St Mark’s lost their first match, this however did not affect their unstoppable performances for the rest of the group fixtures – winning every single one of their matches! Stanford got off to a flying start winning all their games, however when coming face to face with Links, Links scored a last minute goal to win the game 2-1. This seemed to knock Stanford’s players’ confidence as they then drew their final match 0-0 to Sherwood B. Links were not far behind Stanford winning and drawing the majority of their matches, but would it be enough to finish in the top 2? Meanwhile, Beecholme’s star striker scored some unbelievable goals which meant they won some well-deserved matches against some tough opponents. William Morris A and Sherwood B were battling it out for 5th and 6th position and the win William Morris A clutched against Sherwood B turned out to be a highly important for William Morris A’s final position.

The final standings for the group stages were:

Group 1

1st

Gorringe Park

 2nd

Sherwood A

 3rd

St Thomas

4th

Bond

5th

William Morris B

6th

Lonesome

 

Group 2

1st

St Mark’s

2nd

Stanford

3rd

Links

4th

Beecholme

5th

William Morris A

6th

Sherwood B

 

The first round of final matches kicked off with Lonesome v Sherwood B, a William Morris Derby with William Morris A v William Morris B and Bond v Beecholme. Lonesome brought out their best play of the tournament and scored three brilliant goals and finished the competition on a high, winning 3-0. William Morris B went ahead in the first 30 seconds scoring straight from kick off – catching William Morris A off guard. William Morris B did not stop there and went on to score two more goals finishing the match in a 3-0 win. Bond and Beecholme had an incredibly tight match, however Beecholme were able to score a crucial goal in the last minute to secure a 2-1 win.

The second round of matches saw St Thomas take on Links, Sherwood A v Stanford and St Mark’s v Gorringe in the final. St Thomas and Links were both clearly in it to win it and both scored two goals each by the final whistle. They were given two minutes extra time however no one was able to score. This meant it came down to penalties. Each team chose three players to take one penalty each. St Thomas’ goal keeper pulled out the stops and managed to save two goals, whilst their penalty takers scored their first two goals which meant they won the game 2-1 on penalties.

Stanford and Sherwood A was an extremely tight match as both teams were fighting for that third place position. Sherwood A scored an incredible goal to go 1-0 ahead and managed to hold off Stanford’s defiant attacking players and deny them of a goal up until the final whistle.

The play off for first and second position was between St Mark’s and Gorringe Park. Both had had very successful group stages and were very excited to play for the tournament title. Gorringe Park showed no mercy and went 1-0 ahead in the first few minutes. However, battling through the rain St Mark’s did not give up, having some extremely close shots on goal, with one even hitting the post. However, much to their dismay they were unsuccessful and Gorringe Park elated when the final whistle blew as the match finished 1-0 to Gorringe Park.

The final results were as follows:

Position

School

1st

Gorringe Park

2nd

St Mark’s

3rd

Sherwood A

4th

Stanford

5th

St Thomas

6th

Links

7th

Beecholme

8th

Bond

9th

William Morris B

10th

William Morris A

11th

Lonesome

12th

Sherwood B

 

Thank you to St Mark’s CofE Academy for hosting and to their brilliant Sports Leaders for refereeing all matches in the pouring rain.

Well done to Gorringe Park – the new Mitcham Cluster champions, and good luck to them and St Mark’s, Sherwood A and Stanford at the Borough Finals!

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