The first home league game of the season for Coventry Sphinx and the visitors Quorn always provide tough opposition. An important match after opening day defeats for both sides. The weather was playing ball with a beautiful summers evening at Sphinx Drive and a decent crowd was gathering to watch. Sphinx manager Luke Hopkins named an unchanged side with a slight positional change for two players. Right back Jack Rooney swapped places with centre back Matt Taylor in a slight defensive adjustment.
The pitch was looking in good condition this evening and I expected both sides to take advantage of that by playing on the deck. It didn’t take Sphinx long to get on the front foot with an early chance coming from a quickly taken corner that saw Lewis McBride shoot over after being set up by captain Robbie Banks. A promising start for Sphinx became a perfect start in the 9th minute when they took an early lead. Sphinx were awarded a free kick a few yards outside the box. Cain and Jackson stood over the ball and it was JACKSON who stepped up to send a great shot over the wall and flying into the net with Quorn keeper Thacker well beaten. The goal had boosted the confidence of the home side and they were playing some nice stuff through midfield. A brief spell of pressure followed for Quorn but Sphinx defended consecutive corners well to maintain their lead. The game had developed into a good contest and the pace was frenetic at times. Mitch Piggon was the next one to have a chance for Sphinx but his effort hit the side netting after getting through down the inside left channel. As we approached the break the game had become a little scrappy but Sphinx went close to doubling their lead after a move that was started and very nearly finished by Cain. Sphinx could be satisfied with the scoreline but there was more to come from them I felt.
HALF TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX 1 QUORN 0
A quiet start to the half soon burst into life in the 56th minute when Mitchell PIGGON got the goal his work had deserved. He found some space in the box and made no mistake as he thumped in a fierce shot that beat the keeper for pace and rippled the back of the net. 2-0 to Sphinx and a great position for the hosts to be in. Quorn hadn’t given up however and a glorious chance was kept out by O’Neill in the Sphinx goal as the visitors reminded us that this game wasn’t over by any means. Luke Hopkins made a double substitution just after the hour as he replaced both his strikers to get some fresh legs on up front. Jack Jeys and Tom Bates came on with Bates playing in behind the energetic Jeys. The next opportunities went to Quorn as they looked for a way back into the game but poor finishing left the score at 2-0. Sphinx had weathered the spell from Quorn well and the final 15 minutes went to Sphinx with Jack Jeys at the heart of the majority of Sphinx’s threats on goal. His first chance saw him through on goal but his power shot was blocked by Thacker and then he saw a header well saved minutes later. A great one two between Jeys and Bates put Jeys through again and his effort went just wide of the far post. Sphinx were looking likely to extend their lead as we neared the end and a fine run on the break by Luke Downes almost added a third as his shot went just wide with the keeper struggling to get down to it. Overall, a deserved win for Coventry Sphinx and they are now off and running in the league.
FULL TIME: COVENTRY SPHINX 2 QUORN 0
MAN OF THE MATCH: ASH JACKSON
A number of good performances in the Sphinx side tonight as they picked up three points in their first home game. A clean sheet is always a credit to the team and keeper Carl O’Neill was in good form as usual. Matt Taylor looked comfortable at right back after being switched there from centre back. The midfield pair of Robbie Banks and Richard Blythe were excellent. Mitchell Piggon got himself a fine goal and clearly grew in confidence as a result. Ash Cain put in an improved performance as he continued to get himself up to full match fitness and Jack Jeys came off the bench to give us a performance full of energy. My man of the match is Ash Jackson who defended well at left back and dispatched a peach of a free kick to open the scoring.
COVENTRY SPHINX TEAM:
O’NEILL, TAYLOR, JACKSON, BANKS (c), ROONEY, JONES, McBRIDE, BLYTHE, PIGGON (Bates 65 mins), CAIN (Jeys 65 mins), L.DOWNES
Next Coventry Sphinx fixture:
Away – Lye Town – FA CUP – Saturday 15th August, 3 pm kick off – to be played at Bromsgrove Sporting