Ellerslie AFC 0, Mangere United 1
Michaels Avenue, Auckland, August 2 2014
That’s right R2, we’re going to Michaels Avenue. I’ve got a promise to keep… To an old football club.
I hate breaking promises. If I tell someone I’m going to do something, there needs to be an exceptionally good reason for me to cop out. I know from past experience that in the world of volunteer work, there is no worse a reputation to have than that of someone who commits to a task and doesn’t follow through with it, so I take it seriously when for whatever reason I have to be that person. That’s why after promising Ellerslie AFC I would be at Michaels Avenue for their heritage round a couple of weeks ago, I was really embarrassed to not be able to fulfil that promise due to a nasty flu. It went without saying that I had to get there at the next available opportunity. That opportunity was last night.
It was unacceptable really, that before this match there were only two clubs in the Northern Regional Football League that I hadn’t blogged a game from – North Force and Ellerslie. My excuse for North Force is that Whangarei is a bloody long way in the opposite direction from everyone and everything I tend to know and do in my life. My Excuse for avoiding Michaels Ave is much more pathetic than that – I don’t like night games. Ellerslie’s home games all tend to kick off at 6pm and that doesn’t really work for me to be blunt.
The reason I don’t like night games is very simple – no, I’m not afraid of the dark, well, maybe just a little, but the main reason is I can’t take a photo under lights to save myself. This tends to anger me and the more incomprehensible photos I get, the more pissed off I get, and one of these days I’m going to lose my shit completely so I try not to put myself in that situation!
But enough of that. An exception had to be made last night, and made it was without anyone having to bear witness to an Enzo tanty. Thank goodness.
My restraint had a lot to do with a rather entertaining game! I tend to catch myself writing this unfortunate cliché a lot because it’s often the nature of football, but it really could have gone either way. Mangere were pretty dominant on the possession front and created some good chances but they were lacking a bit of sting in the tail. Ellerslie spent most of the match playing a reasonably patient and composed game, letting the visitors come at them and biding their time for the right moment to strike. It was a clash of two very different styles. Organised and orthodox vs what one has come to expect from Mangere, slightly chaotic attack minded flair, only lacking in the final execution.
I thought Ellerslie were going to win. It had that feel about it where I was waiting for them to finally get their one big chance and clinically take it, but it never really came about. Instead in the end the home side started to lose that composure they had shown earlier and began getting a bit shirty with each other at the back. I have never seen a side do this in a tight situation and go on to win, and sure enough in the last ten minutes or so they conceded a penalty. The spot kick was duly slotted by Sandeep Singh, who sent the keeper the wrong way and scooped up all three points.
All that remained after that rather enjoyable evening was to work out what the eff to do with all my rubbish photos from the night. Safe to say this was the worst contents of my SD card that I have ever returned home with, but I have taken a leaf out of the one and only Grant Stantiall’s book. Grant taught me that when you take a crap photo you put it into Photoshop, run some fancy effect through it, and pass it off as art. So that’s what I have done here. To all my shots. I think it’s abstract impressionism. Or something. Enjoy…
Categories: NZ Northern Men's Division 1
A grassroots sports photography enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent football club on earth - A.S. Roma.