After the Lord Mayor’s Show

Hamble 1 Bashley 0
Wessex Premier

Bashley fell to earth with jolt following their pulsating win at Hartley Wintley on Tuesday. The absence, through suspension and injury of the two Harry’s Bunce and Morgan so influential on Tuesday, deprived Bashley’s frontmen of oxygen as did the close marking and tackling of a robust Hamble side looking well worth their high league position.

The home side attacked from the start and Dan Kempson in the Bash goal was quickly the centre of attention with a series of smart saves and good high cross judgement. A Bashley attack was curtailed when ex-Bash warhorse Pete Castle took out Conor Whiteley on the edge of the box. Free-kick specialist Whiteley, still groggy from the tackle, unwisely took the free kick himself which he launched into space.

The game was now even with little quarter being given, Cameron Beard the recipient of a quick clearance from Kempson, completed his wing-side run by cutting inside only to see his cross-the-keeper-shot brush the far post. Minutes later he was free down the centre but was caught and robbed in the goal area before he could shoot. An effort from Morgan Browning skimmed the post; whilst frequent raids down the flanks from the speedy Monks’ wingers kept Kempson fully employed.

The second half mirrored the first with Bashley’s close passing game being severely interrupted by the speed and positioning of the Hamble midfield whilst their own attacking play lacked a necessary edge. With twenty minutes to go, an unsuccessful attack following a Bashley forward push left their defence exposed to a breakaway; a chance accepted by the speedy Jordan Rogguette who left all in his wake before crossing into a, by now crowded goalmouth, where his fellow wing forward Ryan Turner, scored from close range.

Bash pushed hard for an equaliser, with Conor Whiteley dropping into a supply role and Billy Cooper joining Harry McGrath and Beard up front but keeper Luke Deacon’s clean sheet was never seriously in doubt.

Bashley: Kempson, Browning, Smith, Morris, Thompson, Strickland, Cameron, Ross, Whiteley, Cooper, McGrath
Att: 63

Photo: Bash Goalkeeper Dan Kempson

Bashley Harried into the next Round

Hartley Wintney 3 Bashley 4
Hants Senior Cup Round 3

Bashley, at their best, pulled off the surprise of the round with a fully deserved win against their Southern Premier League opponents thanks to the goal scoring skills of their three Harrys. The Wessex League visitors were two goals to the good after just fourteen minutes: a typical Harry McGrath ‘cut-across the box and shoot’ opened the scoring with Harry Bunce adding the second from A Conor Whiteley assist.

Hartley were let back into the game when Jack Smith conceded a penalty. The home side started to take control as the second half started and levelled the score early in the second half only for Bashley to re-take the lead seven minutes later through Harry Morgan.

With twenty minutes to go Hartley once more drew level and then as a draw look the likely result a Billy Cooper pass put in Harry Bunce to snatch a late winner. It could have been more as a Harry McGrath penalty followed but was well saved.

A tremendous game with Bashley and their four Harrys (Harry Gravett was in goal) doing the Wessex League proud.

Bashley: Gravett, Betts, Smith, Browning, Morris, Strickland, Bunce, Ross, Whiteley, Morgan, McGrath
Used Subs: Cooper, Crowe

A Win for Bashley Girls team

Alresford 2 Bashley 6 (Hants Girls Youth League U16)
After being formed less than 18 months ago and consisting of keen young ladies with no previous experience and now playing in a competitive league for the first time, Bashley Girls have recorded their first win and what a win by six goals to two! Congratulations to all.

(Photo taken at the game)

Wins for Bashley Youth teams

Bashley Development 6 Bush Hill 0 (Wyvern League West)
Bashley took an early lead with a firm header by Nick Cooper from an out-swinging corner. This early success settled the home team whose close passing game brought further success with goals from Joe Adams and Greg Cooper, giving a heathy 3-0 first half score line.

Bashley continued the second half in similar fashion with Bush Hill relying on long ball tactics that brought scant reward. Greg Cooper completed a hattrick with header and a tap in whilst Joe Adams coolly claimed his pair leaving Bashley comfortable 6-0 winners.

Baffins Milton Rovers 3 Bashley 4 (U18 Hants County Youth League Div. 2)
As if suffering from the long trip to Southsea, Bashley youngsters found themselves one down after a few minutes. The lead lasted just 15 minutes when Billy Cooper, still stiff from First Team bench sitting the day before, equalised. Baffins were quick to respond with a second goal giving them a 2-1 lead at the break.

Within two minutes of the re-start Cooper scored again only for the home side to re-claim the lead. Not to be outdone Bashley came back strongly and drew level thanks to a cracking goal from Jacob Miller then, with ten minutes left, Josh Cook delivered the winner making it four wins from five for young Bashley.

(Photo Billy Cooper)

Last Gasp Winner Sinks Bash

Fareham Town 2 Bashley 1
Wessex Premier

This was hard fought game that that only broke free of stranglehold in the final minutes. Bashley, buoyant from a run of home wins, were denied access to their usual pass-driven attacking play by the tight marking and hard tackling of a Fareham midfield that kept goal-area visits to a minimum.

Apart from one early attack, when a Harry Bunce attempt from a Morgan Browning cross was easily cleared, most of the danger was at the other end with Dan Kempson in the Bashley goal by far busiest keeper. The visitor’s best chance came after 26 minutes when a Bunce shot, hit through a crowded box, hit the post. Four minutes later the Creeksiders took the lead when, by curtesy of a defence splitting pass, Gary Austin’s hard finish left the gallant Kempson well beaten. The half ended with no further score.

On re-start the home side turned up the gas, and it took a double save to a high ball by Kempson to keep the deficit to one. The strain began to tell, and Brad Strickland’s yellow was quickly followed by Bunce’s ten-minute rest in the sinbin.

The intensity also affected Fareham who went down to 10 the result of a red card. Bashley, encouraged by this change of fortune, increased their attacking options by bringing on George Croucher at the expense of defender Browning.

An excellent cross by Dan Thompson to Harry McGrath deserved better than flying over the bar but then, with just two minutes of clock time left, Thompson repeated the manoeuvre; this time to Bunce who kept his effort under the bar to bring the scores level.

The contest now entered the final round with defence forgotten and forward play rife: a Conor Whiteley special flew just wide whilst Kempson at the other end saved well. With the extra time minutes clicking away, Bunce found himself alone in front of goal with just the keeper to beat and in his attempt to scoop the keeper scooped it over the bar.

Whilst this miss was being contemplated, Fareham in the guise of No.9 Josh Benfield raced away to leave Kempson distraught and give the home side an extra-time winner.

Bashley: Kempson, Thompson, Smith, Strickland, Browning, Morris, Ross, Morgan, Whiteley, McGrath, Bunce
Used Sub: Croucher
Att: 71

Bashley in three Goal Late Stunner

Bashley 3 Baffins Milton Rovers 0
Wessex Premier

The early kick-off, the result of floodlight maintenance, did not deter a well-drilled Baffins side who pressed hard from the whistle. They made light work of the heavy pitch, and play was in one direction for most of the first quarter.

Cometh the hour and cometh the keeper: Bash goalie Dan Kempson, under sustained pressure for the first time since his arrival, together with the central defensive pairing of Dan Thompson and Brad Strickland established a no-go area for the visitor’s striking force.

Despite the onslaught, it was Bash who almost opened the scoring when Harry Bunce pounced onto a loose ball and outpaced the defence and, with only the goalkeeper to beat, was pulled up by the whistle for a foul previously awarded to Bashley.

Play then returned to the other end and featured a multiple save by Kempson: first an aerial punch-out immediately followed by a ground level body block. This proved a turning point in the game, and for the final twenty minutes of the half it was two-way traffic. It was the tricky Bunce who looked the man most likely to end the impasse by twice forcing keeper Cameron Scott into action as the half ended.

Bashley were a different team in the second half and gradually took over midfield dominance from the still dangerous visitors. Harry McGrath escaped down the left and his by-line pass across the face of goal was just too quick for out-stretched Bashley boots.

Baffins, still very much in the game were thwarted when Thompson cleared a dangerous ball from the goal-line. That was the final roll of the dice for the Rovers as Bashley now took over. A perfectly judged free kick across the goalmouth by Harry Morgan was meet and headed goalward by Lewis Ross and returned, via post and keeper, only to be coolly dispatched high into the net by a repeat header from the unflappable Ross.

Ten minutes later it was Morgan’s turn when Bunce’s pass into the box found in him in space; he steadied himself, looked up and calmly place his curling shot high over the heads of keeper and defenders to find sanctuary in the far corner of the net.

With ten minutes to go, U18 striker George Croucher came off the bench and made an immediate impact; Conor Whiteley was quick to pick up the ball after a defender slipped and sprinted into the area then, with the goal within his sights, he unselfishly passed to his right having noticed the run of Croucher and, by George, the youngster was not going to miss this chance to score his first senior goal.

Baffins faded with the light and the game drew to a close.

Bashley: Kempson, Browning, Smith, Thompson, Strickland, Morris, Ross, Morgan, Bunce, Whiteley, McGrath
Used Sub: Croucher
Att: 144

Photo: Goal scorer Harry Morgan

A night for Remembrance

Brockenhurst 1 Bashley 2
Wessex Premier

Bashley, fielding an unchanged side from Saturday, apart from Conor Whiteley replacing the absent Jamie Webber, started with an intensity that was maintained throughout the first half. Brockenhurst were never allowed to settle and spent most of the time on the back foot.

Cameron Beard, looking sharp and dangerous, was enjoying the space created by Conor Whiteley playing as a false number nine. Lewis Ross was a midfield catapult with his forward runs down the centre. Harry Bunce was his usual tormenting self and Harry Morgan always available with his anticipation and use of space. Harry McGrath, in a more defensive role, was quick to pick up any break made by the Badgers.

Surprisingly the first half was goalless but not short of thrills: Beard hit the post; long range specialists Whiteley and Dan Thompson had near misses and Bashley’s approach play a joy to behold. Whilst Brockenhurst had the occasional break it was their defence that took the honours.

As if to taunt my last sentence, it was a goalkeeper error that brought about the first goal. Jon Webb, the reliable Brock keeper, slipped as he attempted a clearance: a mistake that was pounced on by the lurking Whiteley who responded by rounding the embarrassed Webb to open the scoring. Minutes later, Bunce on the edge of the box hounded the ball from harassed defenders and laid back to Beard to hit it home full and hard in classic style. Nine minutes into the half and Bash are two up.

Then to the relief of home supporters the Kraken awakes. Brockenhurst make positional changes, use the bench and apply pressure, driven in the main by two Bash old boys. Mitchel Speechley- Price (MSP), recently returned from Australia, where he broke a goal scoring record and many a young Shelia’s heart, went into a wide-right position where he became the target for long cross-field balls most from the boot of captain Ronan Moore. MSP’s heading was direction controlled and timed to perfection and, thanks to the superb marshalling of the Bash defence, unproductive.

Brad Morris, Dan Thompson and Brad Strickland formed a hard-tackling barrier around keeper Dan Kempson whilst Jack Smith made sure that MSP didn’t function on the ground as he was doing in the air. McGrath hustled and harried and, as the game intensified, defence became a team effort with Bunce alone up front.

Brock got the goal they were searching for in the first minute of extra time from a penalty that nobody was sure what for. The game ended in a show of emotion as Bashley openly celebrated their affection and support for their manager and captain still in shock from the loss of wife and mother Kairen.

Bashley: Kempson, Smith, Thompson, Strickland, Morris, Ross, Morgan, Bunce, Whiteley, Beard, McGrath
Used Sub: Ollie Smith

Photo: Goal scorer Conor Whiteley

A Red end to a Close Game

Cameron Beard

Christchurch 2 Bashley 1

(Wilcock 45′ Cherrett 65′) (Beard 48′) Att: 113
Wessex Premier

This highly anticipated game was not short of thrills, but the expected climax was curtailed by two late red cards.

Bashley, without a game in almost three weeks and with returning new boy Cameron Beard making a season’s first appearance in a black and gold shirt, kicked off down the slope and immediately went on the attack and an early strike from Harry Morgan was just wide.

This dominance was short-lived and Christchurch, with height advantage at both ends countered with speed and anticipation that handcuffed Bash’s passing game. Their eagerness to dominate was slightly overplayed when a goal-bound shot was cleared off the line by their own player!

Yet is was Bash that almost scored first when an out-swinging corner from Morgan was anticipated by the advancing Dan Thompson who scorched the air just above the bar with a powerful header. The home side continued to press until Bashley hit form in the final five minutes of the half.

A flowing training manual move ended with Morgan finding the wrong side of the bar followed by a midfield launched catapult shot from Thompson that hit first, the inside bottom of the post, and then keeper Lewis Gunstone-Grey as it sped across the open goalmouth.

Then, almost before the post stopped reverberating, an air-ball from long-throw specialist Ron Frost caught Bash sky-watching, leaving Max Wilcock free to open the scoring from close range and end the first half.

It took just three minutes for a rejuvenated Bashley to get back into the game, smart work by the ever-active Harry Bunce found Beard in space some ten metres outside of the box and his penetrating drive hit the back of the net before you could say, welcome back Cameron.

Minutes later, another Bunce assist send Beard goal bound only to have his mission abruptly ended in the penalty area. The ever-reliable Lewis Ross took the spot kick and his hard, low shot to the far corner was superbly intercepted by the diving Gunstone-Grey.

Unperturbed, Bashley continued to apply pressure with the best chance falling to Bunce who shot wide. With twenty-four minutes left to play Bashley’s wall of confidence cracked when a lofted freekick taken from some distance was headed home from above the stretched hands of Dan Kempson by Brad Cherrett and despite protests of impediment the goal stood.

Back in the lead and now with a proven formula, the Priory peppered the Bash area with high kicks and long throws but this time Kempson had their measure with a series of well time catches. At the other end Harry McGrath netted after an explosive run by Thompson but the official’s flag was not a surprise. What was a surprise was a hard tackle that took the ball from the toes of Ben Satterley that that earned Beard a red card quickly followed by a red card for Christchurch’s Frost for a kick when grounded. Incidents that seemed harsh to by-standers and slightly marred a game that hab been played in good spirits.

Bashley: Kempson, Webber, Smith, Morris, Thompson, Strickland, Bunce, Ross, Beard, Morgan, McGrath
Used Subs: none

Ross has final say in local clash

Bashley 2 Lymington 1
Wessex Premier

This highly anticipated local derby had the crowd on their toes from the off with Bashley captain, Brad Morris, laying down the gauntlet when sending a shot of some venom just short of the bar. After arriving late to an early corner. The battle lines were drawn when Lymington reacted immediately by rattling the bar at the other end.

Minutes later Conor Whitley was brought down in the box, but his appeal was waved away. The impasse was broken after twenty minutes when a Harry Bunce cross into the Lymington area became the centre of interest before breaking free to Harry Morgan who found goal with a low hard drive from ten yards.

Whiteley, put through on the wide-left by Morris had a snapshot brush the post whilst Bash keeper Dan Kempson did well to leg-out a goal bound shot. The visitors applied pressure in the later end of the half and drew level from a find goal from in-form scorer Dom Falco who met a half volley swirled and shot in one movement giving Kempson no chance.

The second half was no different with both teams striving for the winner. Bashley, who played unchanged throughout looked the more settled side and an early move involving Whiteley and Bunce saw the latter’s shot well saved.

Harry McGrath was active and after a double corner finish the move, but his shot was too high. Bashley continued to press and Dan Thompson was unlucky when slightly off-balance with an audacious hook shot.

Lymington were never out of the game and their accurate cross-field passing and strong runs a constant danger. The decider was the work of Lewis Ross, ironically a former Lymington player. Ross was taken out by a yellow-card foul as he broke free down the left-hand touchline. Morgan’s beautifully floated free kick caused mayhem in the area and was half cleared to the delight of Ross who buried the ball from just wide of the far post.

The remaining thirteen minutes were edge of the seat stuff as both teams fought to the end. A classic well-fought classic local derby.

Bashley: Kempson, Webber, Smith, Morris, Thompson, Strickland, Bunce, Ross, Whiteley, Morgan, McGrath
Att: 159

Tadley Harried in the Rain

Bashley 3 Tadley Calleva 1
Wessex Premier

The continuous rain did nothing to dampen the spirits of the two Harrys, McGrath and Bunce, who found the net three times in conditions more suitable for growing rice. Bashley, with the influential Jack Smith and Conor Whitely returned from suspension, and new signing Dan Kempson playing his first game for the black and golds, kicked off facing the elements.

They made their intent clear from the start with a series of long-range attempts from the boot of Conor Whiteley that tested both keeper and goalframe. It was McGrath, however, who found the key to the vault when activated on his favoured left flank by a Dan Thompson pass, he pranced into the box and drove home through the legs of the advancing keeper.

The remaining twelve minutes of the half was played out in midfield with neither goalkeeper seriously under treat.

Bashley, now with the wind and rain at their backs, opened strongly and three minutes from the re-start increased their lead when Tadley keeper Jack Martin failed to hold a long shot from Whiteley and the resulting rebound was quickly dispatched by the foraging Harry Bunce.

Somewhat surprisingly, the Tadders pulled a goal back when a poor pass from midfield was intercepted and the resultant breakaway let in Brett Denham who surprised the under-used Dan Kempson with a sharp shot.

Bashley, conscious of losing their hard-fought lead, steam-rolled forward with increased determination. Young striker George Croucher came on for the tiring Whiteley and his central presence left space for the reenergised McGrath who along with Bunce and Morgan terrorised the Tadley goal area. Croucher and Morgan both had chances saved but it was McGrath who capitalised on the mayhem and underlined his pedigree with a superb goal.

Following a dynamic run down the centre, that scattered the retreating defence like a ball through skittles, he hit the back of the net with a shot from distance whilst still on full throttle. There was just time for the redundant Dan Kempson in the Bash goal to prove his worth with a smart reaction save to stop a late Tadley goal.

Bashley: Kempson, Webber, Frost, Morris, Thompson, Strickland, Bunce, Ross, Whiteley, Morgan, McGrath
Used sub: Croucher

Attendance: 107

Photo: Double goal scorer Harry McGrath