Last Sunday saw the first outing of the season for Reigate Priory Vets away to Oxshott. Oxshott comprehensively beat the Priory last season at Chelsea’s Training Ground.

This game saw the introduction of two new vets to the Priory squad, Craig Wheeler and Terry King.

Priory didn’t get off to the best of starts when Mark Peters called in sick just before the game, which also meant that not only could he not play but also Dan Peters…the Priory Keeper!!! Luckily the meet time at the clubhouse coincided with the finish of the Sunday first team and Luke Reid whom had just completed 90 minutes for the Priory then found himself involved in the vets game…in goal (thanks Luke!).

The second obstacle came just as the Priory vets started arriving at the ground, Imber Court in East Molesey. A number of calls came into the management asking where the changing rooms where. Having given a swift response along the lines of “how difficult can it be” the management then found themselves looking at a field with numerous pitches, a couple of car parks and half a dozen buildings spread over 50 acres of land!! Eventually the team all found themselves just before kick-off only to find the opposition had no referee, 11 men and no corner flags!.

Just to make matters worse the players were informed that match fees had now gone up to £10, which explains why Ray Connolly (Chairman) decided not to make this game and face the numerous questions about which offshore account the money was all going into.

Unperturbed the Priory Manager was given the job of being referee for the first half with Ken Yau volunteering for the second. Ken Yau was made skipper. After having lost the toss and making the Priory play into the sun he calmly announced that he had never won the toss before!.

The first half proved a very competitive affair with both teams battling to gain control of the game. A number of chances fell to the attacking strike force of Wheeler and Stratton, but nothing on target, which set the theme for the rest of the game!

Stuart Lawson, ever the competitive spirit in midfield took no hesitation in slagging off the referee, even though it was his own team manager!

The second half eventually saw the Priory take control of the game and fitness started to tell. The deadlock was broken by Stratts who took the ball around the goalkeeper. With Wheeler hitting the hedge behind the goal more times than we could all remember it was down to the midfield of Lawson, Turner, Taylor and Moberg to keep control of the game. As the game went on Mizon saw the opportunities to start roaming from his defensive duties. Dan Udall did a good job of making a great defensive clearance while also clearing his team mate, Darren Turner into the sidelines at the same time. Whilst all of this was going on the Oxshott keeper was proving to be a very difficult opponent.

Pressure grew and grew on the Oxshott defence and further goals by Wheeler (lucky deflection of the post) and Stratton final saw the Priory clinch victory.

Johnny Vezza was also over the moon as his Pantofola D Ora boots appeared to be clean with no damage done, although he was still going to get the wife to clean them anyway.

All in all a good performance from Priory Vets and we would like to thank Oxshott for their hospitality.

The next game is Sunday 24th November away to Farnborough Old Boys.

Squad: Reid, Lomas, Udall, Mizon, Yau, Vezza, Freeman, King, Moberg, Turner, Lawton, Taylor, Stratton, Wheeler.