Veterans v Standon & Puckeridge Vets, 12 Sep 2021 (League)
Buntingford Won 2-0
Steve Dare in a feisty mood
A gloriously sunny morning saw local rivals Standon & Puckeridge arrive at The Bury to face a Bunts side missing a clutch of household names.
Absent were Rocket Ronnie, goal machine, Nathe, Bealey the magician and the ink-stained lothario, Wayne.
Also on the missing list was gaffer, Gary ‘i’m not joking!’ Smith, who chose to hand the managerial duties over to the always immaculately-groomed, Matt Smyth who in turn had to depart the action earlier when his paper ankles were showing more tears than usual; thankfully he was replaced by the excellent Laurence Salmon who followed his instructions to the letter.
‘New boy’ Chris Adams looking particularly solid and unflappable at the back and thoroughly deserved his MOTM status, in fact to a man Bunt, if not always consistent battled with the vim and gusto this particular fixture always requires.
Stevie Dare was his usual combustible-self and at times seemed to take it as a personal insult for a red shirt to even be near him, to the point that one wondered if a young child dressed in the same colours happened to wander innocently onto the playing area, they too would be duly despatched over the rails and into orbit.
Liam Jennings opened the scoring
Chrissy Saynor was in normal marauding mood and at times gave the impression that the ball was very nearly under control.
Another special mention to Ricky who arguably possesses the most God-given talent in a squad not short of natural ability, but whose effort off the ball can often be outshone by a stranded fish on a riverbank, but after inspirational words by his stand-in boss, was superb on the day.
The first half was closely contested with Bunt enjoying more of the ball but the deadlock remained until late into the second half.
Confusion reigned for a brief moment over a disputed offside call; all that was absolutely clear was the incident saw the busy Liam Jennings honing in on goal with the ball at his feet which he coolly dispatched into the visitors’ net.
Standon responded well and nearly found themselves on level terms when Salmon put his only foot wrong all day, but the chance went begging and realistically so did Standon’s hopes.
Glen Doughty scored Town's second
The game was sealed when Carter, who had replaced the tirelessly working Dan Holding, picked up a cheeky Salmon free-kick on the bye line and waited for the onrushing Glen Doughty to charge into the box; and he waited; and he waited!
Eventually the emoji-headed hotshot arrived to thunder an unstoppable shot past the flailing ‘keeper.
The handshakes that signalled the end of the game soon followed.
Then the beer flowed long into the afternoon and eventually when the last emotionally-drained Vet had wandered home all that remained were the dying echoes of the celebrations - ‘Ooh, ooh the net’s on fire!’ (repeat twice more into fade).