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WOMEN | Match Report: Aztecs 2 v 5 Bloomsbury

15th October 2022: The curtain raiser in Lancashire ends in defeat against a familiar foe.

A very English line-up in Preston as these eight took to the court at the Sir Tom Finney Sports Centre in these excellent new red away kits.

Full of optimism for the season, it was great to be back on the court competing in tier one once again. After several delays, everyone was excited to begin, and didn't let the long trip to Preston interfere.


Being the third match up between these teams inside twelve months, it feels like the two teams know each other well. Even the knew signings made by both are familiar faces. With one win apiece, who was going to take the win in this game?


The Aztecs had the first proper chance, when Bekah Tonks intercepted a Helena Scotland pass, before nutmegging the Bloomsbury fix to play in Alicia Povey 1v1 against Alice Harkness-Armstrong. New signing versus new signing, the keeper made herself big, and Povey shot wide, with very little goal to aim at due to the keeper's good positioning.


Bloomsbury broke the deadlock with ten minutes played. Scotland's pass/shot towards goal had to be tipped wide from Sayler. Southampton switched off from the corner, and Salas found space to hit a shot into the far bottom corner making it 1-0.


Bloomsbury doubled the lead a minute later. Harkness-Armstrong rolled the ball out to Salas on the halfway line, who played down the line to Firth-Salem, who turned past Curtis and hit a shot low and through the legs of Sayler to make it 2-0.


The Southampton response was immediate, with Sayler playing high and sending a fantastic diagonal ball through to Curtis who shot from inside the D, squeezing it past Harkness-Armstrong, but unfortunately it came back off the post, and was scrambled clear. But when it rains it pours. The game went from 0-0 to 3-0 in the space of two minutes. Another Bloomsbury corner, players switching off once again, and a second shot squirmed past Sayler into the net, struck by Lewis-Shodeinde. This was now a mountain to climb with just over a quarter of the game played.


The Aztecs started the second half in a higher gear, opting for a high press. It paid off almost instantly. A ball inside from Bloomsbury, Moody prevented Scotland from turning. Bekah Tonks took the ball and played a lovely outside of the foot pass to Kayleigh Tonks, who shot home into the near corner. Very similar to the Tonks to Tonks goal scored against Bloomsbury in the last encounter.


On top, but still 3-1 down, the Aztecs conceded another sloppy goal. Kraakman side-stepped past Maidment, and hit a low central shot past Sayler that she will be rightly annoyed about, making it 4-1 to Bloomsbury.


It went from bad to worse on only a minute later as Bloomsbury took it to 5-1. Bekah Tonks played a square ball to Sayler, playing fly in the Bloomsbury half. Trying to play the pass, Sayler was clattered into, but adjudged to have not been fouled. The ball fortuitously rolled directly to the feet of Kraakman, who struck the ball first time into the empty net from distance.


Bloomsbury should have made it six. Sanchez played in Scotland down the left, 1v1 with Sayler, but the cross went across goal with no contact from Salas approaching the far post.


The Aztecs eventually scored a deserved second goal after being awarded a penalty. Sayler threw long to Bekah Tonks, who held up well to send it wide to Kayleigh Tonks. With Maidment crashing the D, Tonks' cross hit the arm of Scotland, and a penalty was awarded. Rebecca Moody, who is becoming a set-piece expert, stepped up to take the penalty. She smashed it past Harkness-Armstrong into the bottom left corner, to make it 5-2.


A tense, tough battle between these familiar opponents. A total of five yellow cards were awarded, 3-2 in favour of Bloomsbury. Picking up yellows for the Aztecs were Alicia Povey and Kayleigh Tonks.


With the first game now out the way, attention for the first team turns towards Cheshire, being played at the Princess Royal Sports Complex near Taunton. It's a 10:15 kick off, and will be live on YouTube for fans to view.

Rebekah Tonks won the player of the match award, as voted for by the team.

Amy Maidment was voted as the fans' choice for player of the match for those watching at home. A great performance in the reserves two weeks ago, followed up by another great performance in this tier one game with the first team.

Watch the highlights back here.

View the whole match below.

Enjoy these photos from the game.

The scores from the day of games.


Manchester 0 - 13 Birmingham WLV

Bloomsbury 5 - 2 Southampton Aztecs

Bolton 8 - 3 Cheshire

Hartpury 1 - 9 London Helvecia


The Aztecs will be travelling the length and breadth of England. Be sure to check our schedule to see when the team will be playing near you.


If you want our official Adidas kit, get yourself over to KitLocker.

If you would like other Aztecs merchandise, go to Spreadshirt.

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