On Saturday 24th September The Mall hosted 24 teams and over 170 excited footballers in the annual Mall School U13 5-a-side Football Tournament. The Mall had three teams taking part and the boys were expecting the standard to be tough.
The ‘C’ team battled valiantly in their three games and scored a superb team goal against Tower House ‘A’. Cassius Westlake impressed with his tenacity as did James Clarke’s goalkeeping skills. Despite being knocked out of the Shield Competition the boys should be delighted with their efforts on the day.
Similarly, the ‘B’ team found themselves against stiff opposition but never gave up fighting. This was highlighted through a tremendous last minute goal against Newland House ‘B’. Hishaam Hussain shone in midfield as did Theo Shah with his goalkeeping exploits. Ultimately Sussex House proved too strong but Mr Box was impressed with their efforts.
The ‘A’ team got off to a slow start as some lapses in concentration cost the team a couple of goals against a well organised St James team. The match against Sussex House ‘A’ was a far better game as Emad Khan and Rhys Johnson marshalled the defence. Unfortunately, the boys were unable to take their chances in front of goal which meant they progressed through to the Shield Competition, where they faced Kew House. This game was certainly a tale of two halves as The Mall scored some superb goals but were hit by momentary lapses. The game went in to extra time and the dreaded ‘Golden Goal’ 3-a-side. Despite the best efforts of Fergus Duncan, Pallav Bagchi and Emad Khan, Kew House scored with a minute remaining. Joshua Acela impressed up front with Joshua Shearer battling through a knee injury in goal. Alex Neale also contributed significantly to the team.
Congratulations to Sussex House (Shield), St James (Plate) and Thomas’ Battersea (Cup) who were the winners on a glorious day in Bushy Park.
Despite the disappointment of being knocked out, the ‘A’ team bounced back two days later as they secured an 11-a-side victory over local rivals Newland House.