The Chairgirls made the trip to Abingdon United on Sunday for their second league game of the campaign.
This was always going to be a tough fixture as in previous seasons, every game has been highly competitive with results favouring both teams.
Abingdon were fielding three former Chairgirls in their starting line up to add extra spice to the game in the shape of Lindsay Pinker, Steph Mobbs and Hannah Cox. It was the hosts who found themselves taking control of the game within two minutes when a mis-placed Inniss pass found its way to opposing wide midfielder, Russell-Cartwright, who took the chance with aplomb. A second goal came when the lively Molly Lygoe capitalised on some loose Wycombe play to strike home on fifteen minutes leaving Amy Whale in the Wycombe goal no chance. Whale was forced into a number of saves over the next ten minutes or so and coped with all that was thrown at her comfortably. Wycombe were gradually easing themselves back into the game with some sound build up play of their own with the energetic Howes leading the way breaking into Abingdon defensive territory frequently and trying to create chances for team mates.
On 32 minutes disaster struck for the visitors when Bobby Lynch twisted her knee in a challenge with Osborne-Ricketts. Lynch had to leave the field and was subsequently taken to hospital where the provisional diagnosis is a torn medial collateral ligament and possible torn cartilage. If ratified by a scan later this week, that is likely to be long time out to recover. Lynch, being one of the more experienced and capable players in this Wycombe side will be sorely missed.
However, taking her place was debutant and new signing Felicity West who showed some good early touches. Wycombe saw out the final minutes of the half and enjoyed a glimmer of hope when, following an excellent build up, the ball found Kara Howes who fired narrowly wide with arguably the best chance of the half for Wycombe.
The second half saw a change in the Chairgirls defensive organisation, allowing Abingdon to have the ball in their own half and then working hard to turn over possession in the middle third which proved a successful tactic in keeping the hosts at bay for the most part. There were a few rare opportunities carved out by Wycombe on the break with Roberts and Inniss threatening but nothing to unduly concern Cox in the Abingdon goal. It was former Chairgirl and play-maker, Lindsay Pinker who extended the lead for the hosts on 66 minutes when her skilful run created space to strike what was arguably intended as a far post cross into the top corner of the net.
All credit to the Wycombe players led by the indomitable force that is skipper Katie Hudson. They put themselves on the line to deter the hosts and had several scrambles in and around their penalty area, making blocks and denying clear strikes on goal in the final 10 minutes or so when legs were getting tired. When Abingdon did breach the back line they found youngster Whale equal to the challenge coming off her line bravely on a couple of occasions and making some very competent saves.
Two games down and no points on the board as yet. It will be the battling qualities of this squad that will dig them out of this early season malaise which they showed against a very good Abingdon team in the second 45 minutes and having recovered from the loss of a significant player in Bobby Lynch. We wish her a speedy recovery and look forward to welcoming Oxford City to Flackwell Heath next Sunday for another league fixture with a 2pm kick off.