Dadston Villa 10
Dad of the Match: Roe
Papathinaikos put themselves in prime position to pounce if leaders Real MaDad slip up in their final fixture by overcoming Dadston Villa 14 - 10. Papa overcame a mid season blip and have now matched Real’s early season record by winning 5 games in a row to put pressure on the leaders and could win the title if they win their remaining fixture and Real fail to take all 3 points.
Things have certainly changed in the past few weeks as we reach a title showdown that is still a three horse race. Dadston themselves were right in the title fight after beating Real at the start of January, but 3 defeats had left them fighting to finish for second rather than first. Although weakened through the absence of midfield maestro Tillett, captain Smith and Cott, Dadston were determined and happy to battle hard in an entertaining first half. It was end to end stuff and both teams traded goals but never really got a foothold on the game, and Dadston edged it at the halfway point with a 7-6 lead.
The second half showed exactly why Papa have engineered their way into the title fight as they took control of the tie in clinical fashion. Roe, Murdoch, Jones, Daniels and Holmes all helped themselves onto the scoresheet, whilst Godfrey was alert at the opposite end to thwart Brock, Cross and Moon on numerous occasions. The determination from Papa was plain to see, as their healthy lead was well protected as they ran down the clock. As the minutes ticked down, Godfrey let a long range effort from Brock slip through his butterfingers, but it wasn’t enough to deter a strong second half showing from Papa who scored 8 with just 3 in reply and thoroughly deserved all 3 points.
The win sets up an interesting end to the season, with 3 teams still in with a chance of winning the title. Real remain best placed on 22 points and a win in their final game against Dadford on Monday would be enough to secure the title for a second year running with a unassailable 25 points. Papa sit second on 20 points and could pip Real in their final game should their rivals fail to win. The dark horse in the trio are Dad’s Army, who must win two games back to back to stand a chance of winning. If Real fail to win, it could set up a potential showdown between Papa and Dads Army on the final day of the season.