HOSTS Hambleden lost out 3-2 in a charity match to a Reading Legends side at
HOSTS Hambleden lost out 3-2 in a charity match to a Reading Legends side at the Dene on Sunday in a game that saw the visitors’ defender Jordan Norris suffer a broken leg.
Hambleden lined up with team based mainly on their usual Saturday side with three added Sunday team players and three guest players.
The match started with Reading quickly showing their professional skills and experience against the amateur side as they were finding space with their quick passing and were soon bombarding the Hambleden area with crosses.
The Legends flashed a far post header wide while a good tackle from Chris Brunning stopped a Reading player from shooting on the edge on the box.
After 10 minutes Reading were awarded a penalty when Ross Weatherstone went down under a stern challenge from Hambleden centre back Miguel Ballon just inside the box. The penalty was despatched in the bottom right corner with the Hambleden keeper Butler only inches away from stopping it.
Soon after it was 2-0 to the Legends after a move involving some good passing play.
Hambleden pulled a goal back on the half hour mark when Nick Ellis latched on to a good through ball before firing past Legends’ keeper Phil Brown. Five minutes before half-time the hosts levelled the scores. The Stags forward was hauled down in the Reading box and guest player Wayne Croxford fired home from the resulting penalty.
Just before half-time Reading took the lead when a cross deceived the Hambleden defence and made its way into the goal.
The second half was a close affair with Hambleden denied twice by the Reading keeper. Later in the half the visitors had to make a change as fullback Norris left the pitch with a broken leg.
As the Hambleden legs got tired, Reading turned the screw and had a few chances of their own. a long range effort flashed wide and in stoppage time, Hambleden keeper Butler dived full stretch and tipped an overhead bicycle kick on to the post to deny the legends a late goal.
The day raised £750 towards new dugouts that got destroyed in a recent storm and money for charity.