In the first 10 minutes Monk were all over their opponents but then the referee decided to get in on the act. Joshua Riggs got himself sin-binned although, by all accounts, he was not the guilty party. That swung the momentum of the game and for the 10 minutes that Monk were down to ten, Redhouse were well on top and Monk had to batten down the hatches to keep it at 0-0.
Once Riggs re-entered the fray Monk once again took control of the game and and after half an hour went in front through Jake Kimber. Things were looking good for a half-time lead until one of those, now almost traditional, Monk mistakes let the hosts back in for an equaliser.
HT Purton Redhouse 1 Jovial Monk 1
Into the second half and once again the referee decided to take centre stage awarding a controversial penalty to Redhouse. Once again Josh Riggs got the rough end of the stick and this time went into the referees notebook, despite the fact that he was not the player who made the tackle from which the penalty was given. Riggs clearly not on the referee's birthday card list.
So, 2-1 to Purton Redhouse and, to make matters worse, Monk's goalkeeper Jesse Seward-Nice injured his shoulder, even though he managed to continue for the time being. With 15 minutes left on the clock and Monk still trailing, The Gaffer decided to make Riggs' day even more eventful, and pushed him up front in an all or nothing move to 3-3-4 and the hope of getting a goal.
Sure enough, Monk forced a corner and from the ensuing cross Declan Conlon, up from the back, powered in a header for 2-2. The attacking formation had paid off but what next? Revert back to a more defensive formation and protect the point or stay as they are and go for the win. Is that really a question? It's Jovial Monk people, they play to win.
Shortly afterwards the gamble paid off. Another header this time from, yes you guessed it, Josh Riggs. Converted from centre-back, he popped up with the third goal. 3-2
However, with 5 minutes remaining, Jesse was unable to continue between the sticks. I'll give you one guess who stepped up to take the gloves......yep, you got it. Josh Riggs. Monk had no more subs left, so not only were they playing an outfield player in goal they were also down to 10.
Now, after all that already happened, you might expect that Riggs also had to save a penalty to assure the three points. What do you think this is, Roy of the Rovers? Surely, a sin-bin, a yellow card, a goal and then taking over in goal is enough for anyone?
FT Purton Redhouse 2 Jovial Monk 3.
The result takes Jovial Monk up to fourth spot a point above AFC Stratton and a point below Casuals. However, both of these teams have at least one game in hand. That said, a top three finish is still on the cards for Monk with five games remaining. Next scheduled game for JM is not until April 3rd when they are due to travel to Chiseldon. Of course, there's always time to give a lesson to another Saturday team in that time. Maybe Josh Riggs will have recovered from last Sunday by them too?