PL Match Reports v TEM - 2 June

June 03, 2018 at 9:33 PM

Conversion tough but enough good work                                                                        Men

Doncaster’s Premier League Men had scored brilliantly in the previous round with eight goals.  That goal conversion dried up against Toorak-East Malvern (TEM) on Saturday with just two goals but Doncaster’s work rate was up to speed coming home with a 2-1 win.

Doncaster took early control of play despite losing Captain Russell Ford to injury in the opening two minutes and Rusty did not return to the pitch.  As the match progressed Doncaster held much of the ball in their forward half, although shots at goal weren’t overly frequent, TEM’s last line was strong.

Kiran Arunasalam, Calvin Martinz and Daniel McBride were proving more than a handful for TEM and defence was their concentration, not attack.  At the 15 minute mark a long ball from Doncaster’s defensive half from Joel Carroll was perfect to Luke Evered who was able to push deep into the scoring circle.  The contest that followed saw the ball pop free where Josh Simmonds pounced and found the net, Doncaster were on the board.

Three minutes later and a similar long ball from defender Jarrod McBride gave Arunasalam room to penetrate the circle where Luke Davidson finished off the good work scoring Doncaster’s second goal.

With TEM struggling to push deeply into their scoring zone, Doncaster’s huge win from the previous round was looming.  It may have loomed but it didn’t arrive.  While Doncaster continued to dictate play, TEM defended stoutly and the net was kept at a distance.

In the first half neither side took a short corner.  In the opening 6 minutes of the second, six short corners rattled away; just one for TEM but five for Doncaster yet none could convert to score.

As the play settled back after the short corner flurry, Doncaster were looking to move the ball faster and with longer passes as a way to break open the TEM backline which was stacked with numbers.  Such a strategy is tough where gaps have to open up and passes need to be perfect.

One of the risks is that oppositions can trigger fast breaks which is exactly what TEM did.  At the 14 minute mark of the second half a TEM fast break saw the ball quickly in their circle and a cross from the baseline was well deflected into the net.  While TEM had focused on defence for the bulk of the match they were now just a goal behind.

Two TEM short corners then raised the Doncaster blood pressure but Adam Truepenny led the battery well to keep the net clear.  At the Doncaster circle, five short corners there raised the TEM blood pressure but once again conversion was not the order of the day and the entire match finished with no short corners resulting in goals.

Doncaster continued to control the bulk of general play and their two field goals were significantly stronger than TEM’s one.

Doncaster 2 defeated Toorak-East Malvern 1

Goals: Josh Simmonds, Luke Davidson

Best Player: Kiran Arunasalam, Lachlan McGowan, Zac Meaden, Calvin Martinz

A match of two halves that Doncaster capitalised on                            Women

Doncaster’s Premier League Women travelled to Toorak-East Malvern’s (TEM) ground for a match that was played in two distinct halves.  Doncaster controlled the majority of the first half capitalsing with that control for a 3-0 lead at the long break.  A new TEM team started the second half and a real arm wrestle followed.  For the second half TEM certainly won on the scoreboard, 1-0 but on balance, Doncaster were the better side on the whole day and came home with a 3-1 win.

As the match settled into play it was Doncaster that took more control of the contested ball and held possession with system.  Doncaster’s pressure was certainly making a difference and at the six minute mark Shae Jones intercepted a TEM pass where she gave Hayley Padget enough room to head forward at speed.  At the top of the circle Padget drew defenders and passed to Izzy Peskett whose tomahawk scored the first goal of the match.

TEM had certainly lifted their work rate and 50/50 contest followed through the mid-field.  However, Doncaster’s pressure was relentless resulting in the Dons controlling more traffic.  Padget was playing closer to the mid-field and was well supported by Shae Jones and Sam Snow.  When the Dons’ mid-field pushed forward, Peskett and Sarah Down were also at their best, probing for gaps and pressuring defenders.  TEM were under the pump.

At the 20 minute mark Padget quickly played a free hit and pushed into the circle where a TEM foot resulted in a Doncaster short corner.  The initial shot was well saved but Snow pounced on the live ball and her shot from the top of the circle put Doncaster’s second goal on the board.

Despite the scoreboard, TEM efforts never waned and they continued to look for attacking gaps.  Doncaster’s Chloe Burns, Cassie Stoneham and Amber Deo saw plenty of ball but TEM saw little of the net, Doncaster’s defence consistently became attack.

At the 24 minute mark another Shae Jones intercept on the 25 metre line had Padget again in the circle and another short corner was called.  Snow’s initial shot was aimed at Down who deflects the pass perfectly and Doncaster are now 3-0 in front.

What was said to the TEM players at half time isn’t certain but TEM probably need to write it down and circulate it across the entire club.  A side that certainly worked hard in the first half came out in the second half with better structure and executed their plan far better; a new TEM side played the second half.

While TEM’s structure and execution was more effective, control of the match was now a wrestle, the ball was contested between the 25 metre lines, deep penetration was extremely hard work, either way.  TEM had taken a leaf out of Doncaster’s book in the first half and the TEM pressure was now forcing errors through the Doncaster players.  Passes went astray and turnovers arose.  However, as good as TEM played, Doncaster’s solid defence form the first half operated every bit as well under the created pressure.

As well as TEM lifted their structure, the clock was starting to become their enemy.  With just eight minutes remaining TEM’s improved performance was finally rewarded with the quick movement of the ball leading to their first goal.  But as well as TEM had lifted, that lift was too late, Doncaster had established a gap too big to bridge.

Doncaster 3 defeated Toorak-East Malvern 1

Goals: Hayley Padget, Sam Snow, Sarah Down

Best Players: Hayley Padget, Sarah Down, Sam Snow