The 121 Nuneaton Squadron 5 a side football team set off at 0900 towards Birmingham , where the event was held. Our aim for the day was to survive round 2 of the instant knockout tournament, and play in the quarterfinals.
The team was:
- Cdt Cpl Mckeown
- Cdt Deacon
- Cdt Newbery
- Cdt Routley
- Cdt Truman
- Cdt Kay
- Cdt Harding
- Cdt Mullholland
Our First match was against 496 Squadron. The team played well and emerged victorious to win 3 - 2. Cdt Cpl Mckeown scoring two of the goals and Cdt Newbery scoring the winner. The team was very excited and pleased that we managed to clinch a victory and we were looking forward to our next match, against 198 Squadron.
We left the pitch to find that our next opponents, 198 squadron, did not turn up for the event and we were granted automatic qualification to the quarterfinals. The team was very excited that we had gotten quite far and were eager to play our match in the quarterfinals.
The time came for us to face 479 Squadron in the quarterfinals of the competition. The team was eager to play because if we won this match, we would go to the semi finals, which would be played at wing training day, which is held at Bramcote Barracks, on Sunday 26 th June 2005.
We started the match Positively, with Cdt Routley scoring the 1 st goal of the match and his first goal of what was to become a long score tally for him. The score was short lived as 479 squadron equalized just 30 seconds after our first goal. A minute after that 479 squadron scored another flukey goal from the half way line, shifting the score to 121 squadron one, 479 squadron two.
At this time, Cdt Mullholland and Cdt Kay were substituted for Cdt Cpl Mckeown and Cdt Newbery, the scorers from the first match.
Just a few seconds after the substitution Cdt Routley scored his second goal, matching the score as 2-2.
The whistle blew for half time and the teams quickly changed sides of the pitch. Moments later Cdt Routley scored a prolific long-range strike and slotted the ball into the bottom left corner. 479 were slow to equalize but eventually gained a goal, making the score 3-3. Both teams were at a stalemate, pushing as hard as they could to try to score the winner. 30 seconds before the match was due to end, a player from 479 squadron hit the ball and Cdt Truman, the goalkeeper did well to parry the shot. Unluckily, Cdt Routley was running to the post and the parried ball hit him and went into the back of our own net. Cdt Routley was only about 2 meters away from the goalkeeper and could do nothing to get out of the way of the ball. The whistle was blown and the goal was given and 479 squadron were in the lead, beating us 4-3.
Before we had the chance to pounce back and equalize, the final whistle went and the team of 121 squadron had lost. Victim to an unlucky own goal.
"I enjoyed playing in the matches but I just wish we could have beaten 479 so we could face the enjoyment of seeking the 5 a side football trophy at wing training day." ~ Cdt Cpl Mckeown
"You were the best team on the pitch and it was unfortunate that you scored an own goal" ~ Referee
We went home feeling a little down hearted because we knew that we should have beat 479 squadron, but at the same time we were happy that we had achieved our goal of getting into the quarterfinals of the competition.
There is always next year.