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We all knew that Jon had one hand on the KOBRA VI crown before we’d kicked a ball, but we wondered what progress we had made (if any!) since we’d last played him. The league then was largely irrelevant to me and although I stood an outside chance of nicking the silver medal in the very last match, I spent all night – and finished in – a steady 3rd position!

v STEVE
Steve E,4,Garry C,1,
Garry C,1,Steve E,1,
Steve E,1,Garry C,1,
Garry C,5,Steve E,4,

Steve very much has the upper hand against me lately and I think it had been many months since I’d last beat him in a tournament match. Our matches were very edgy affairs but Steve showed me where the net was in the opening match which after a goaless first half, he deservedly took the match 4-1. 

When we met in the next two rounds, both goals I conceded where as a result of serious defensive HOWLERS! I also had so much time – maybe even two much time – in our second game to take all three points with a simple trap and move 1v1 situation but the JITTERS struck again. As it was they both ended 1-1 – at least I’d stopped the rot of recent defeats against Stevio! 

Finally, in the fourth round, in yet another very close affair, I took the match with a rare piece of composure up front to win a narrow 5-4!

So we ended all square for the evening: W1-D2-L1

v JON
Garry C,3,Jon G,12,
Jon G,4,Garry C,2,
Garry C,4,Jon G,5,
Jon G,5,Garry C,3,

If my first match was anything to go by, losing 3-12 meant I’d made no progress whatsoever!!  Jon is the UK’s no. 1 and I don’t want to take anything away from him but this game was an example of the WORST GOALKEEPING I HAVE EVER WITNESSED! 

I swear it wasn’t until Jon hit double figures that my keeper made his first save! Although some of these goals were undoubtably quality finishes, others were very soft goals.  I even think the final match stats showed something like 14 shots on target, 12 of which were goals!

Thankfully, however, my keeper decided to show up in our next tie, and for the first time I felt I made Jon work for his victory 4-2. Progress at last! And in our third round game, the game immediately after Simon took an impressive 3points from the champ, I nearly did the unthinkable too!!! With less than 60 seconds to go I edged into a 4-3 lead – could this be the one, I wondered??? When the going gets tough, the champs get going – I have to give massive credit to Jon who when staring defeat in the face, showed quality and composure to not only equilise but in the last seconds of the game to win 5-4!!  So close but no cigar. 

With improving confidence and in our final game I went in with a half-time lead, but again the cream always rises to the top, and unstoppable Jon took another victory. Nevertheless I took heart from our encounters and maybe, just maybe, my first points against Jon are now on the horizon!!! 

So Jon’s 100% record continued against me: W0-D0-L4

v SIMON
Simon K,1,Garry C,3,
Garry C,5,Simon K,3,
Simon K,5,Garry C,5,
Garry C,1,Simon K,3,

In recent times the pendulum has swung back to me against my arch rival and thankfully this continued at least for the first two matches. Our first match remained 1-1 for some time and Si’s goal came courtesy of a freak penalty. I’d had some great situations before then to cruise in this game but hadn’t made the most of them. Fortunately I edged in front with a corner routine and secured the game with a mid-range lob! Again I had the upper hand against Si in our second game 5-3 but he was definately was getting stronger as the night went on. I salvaged a 5-5 draw in the third round before Si deservedly got his reward and beat me in the final match of the tourney 3-1, even though second place was whispering in my ear!

Our ties finished W2-D1-L0.

Congrats again to Jon – worthy champion – and good to have you guys over again! MORE KOBRAs in the new year….

 

k7_table

Round#1
Simon K,1,Jon G,9,
Steve E,4,Garry C,1,
Steve E,6,Simon K,0,
Garry C,3,Jon G,12,
Simon K,1,Garry C,3,
Jon G,8,Steve E,3,

Round#2
Jon G,6,Simon K,4,
Garry C,1,Steve E,1,
Simon K,2,Steve E,4,
Jon G,4,Garry C,2,
Garry C,5,Simon K,3,
Steve E,1,Jon G,4,

Round#3
Simon K,4,Jon G,3,
Steve E,1,Garry C,1,
Steve E,5,Simon K,3,
Garry C,4,Jon G,5,
Simon K,5,Garry C,5,
Jon G,4,Steve E,1,

Round#4

Jon G,5,Simon K,3,
Garry C,5,Steve E,4,
Simon K,3,Steve E,3,
Jon G,5,Garry C,3,
Garry C,1,Simon K,3,
Steve E,3,Jon G,4,

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