The Men’s development team hosted bottom of the table Wimbourne Wayfarers, but any thoughts of the 9-1 win demolition in the first half of the season (when legendary veteran John Pearson was on the scoresheet!) were quickly dispelled with Wimbourne having most of the first half of the match. It did not help that the team had very little warm up and were again without key players, but with Wimbourne only playing with 10 the Island side were disappointingly lacklustre with their first half performance. The Island did believe they had taken the lead late in the first half when skipper Mike Dodds dragged a push into the far corner of the goal from just inside the D, however neither umpire could agree whether the drag was definitely inside and the goal did not stand. This did fire up the side and they did at least end the half positively by carving a number of chances which the opposition keeper was equal to.
With the first half out of the way the team started much brighter after the break. The defence of Pete McKnight, Toby Noyes, John Pearson and the impressive Archie Clark gave Lewis Wells in goal with little to do. The midfield of Wightlink Man of the Match Ethan Edmunds-Lamb, Steve Holbrook, Mike Dodds and Will Bevan made great in roads into the opposition giving the returning Neil Riley and Carl Joyce a lot of ball and chances started coming more frequently. Wimbourne however managed to frustrate the Island considerably and it took some time for the Island to finally breach the defence with Carl Joyce scrambling home. With the first goal finally scored it did not take long for the Island to score again with Carl Joyce netting his second of the match. Full of confidence the team continued to dominate and were looking at increasing their lead, but Wimbourne had other ideas and against the run of play they bulldozed through and scored to reduce the deficit, albeit in the lead up to the goal there was a hint of the scorer playing the ball off his chest before netting. Determined not to let them draw level the Island side increased the tempo again, Ethan Edmunds-Lamb was playing superbly down the left side helping to create numerous chances. The team was eventually rewarded for their dominance with a Penalty Stroke when a shot was stopped by the body of a defender and although the defence felt the ball was just going wide the umpires felt otherwise and Mike Dodds stepped up to put the game beyond Wimbourne with his flick put just out of reach of the keepers dive. Super-sub Tony Edmunds-Lamb was introduced to add some extra pace up front and shortly after the Island side put the proverbial cherry on the cake with another goal with Mike Dodds remaining composed under pressure to score his second and the Island’s fourth of the match. A hard fought 4-1 win against a steely Wimbourne side that gave them more than a scare. Next up the side are away to top of the league Portsmouth 4s.