Friday, 10 August 2012

Appleby Frodingham 1 v Grimsby Borough 4 - Baris NCEL Division 1

Friday 10th August 2012, at Brumby Hall
Baris North East Counties League, Division 1
Appleby Frodingham (0) 1
Sam Longman 90
Grimsby Borough (0) 4
Luke Fanthorpe 55, Andy Taylor 60, 61, Jordan Ramsden 69
Admission £4, Programme £1, Attendance 64
A Friday night out in 'Sunny Scunny'.
The archetypal game of two halves if ever there was one, played out against a backdrop of pleasant ambience and cheery camaraderie.
With some large igloo type pods conveniently positioned o'er yonder side of the pitch, that provided me with the props for a plethora of photo opportunities.
The aliens who have set up residence next door to Brumby Hall, in their newly built 'pod settlement', were reluctant to talk about what they were doing on planet earth, but did tell me that when they were looking for somewhere to land, Scunthorpe appealed to them because of it's lack of atmosphere.
It was good to catch up with several familiar faces again, some of whom I haven't seen since last season (AKA approx 3.5 weeks ago) and I was charmed to (finally) make the acquaintance of a few others too.
The first half set off at a cracking pace, 100mph end to end stuff, with no quarter given as both keepers were called upon time after time to deal with the frequent goalmouth action at both ends, as the crowd were treated to an abundance of thrills, spills and mouthwatering action. An excellent opening 45 minutes seemed to fly by in no time whatsoever ... is an opening gambit that doesn't actually describe what really happened at all.
The first half was excruciatingly bad to watch.
It was almost painful to behold at times.
And save for a couple of brave stops by the visitors keeper Leigh Cook, on the two rare occasions that either side looked remotely interested, nothing much happened at all.
The Main Stand

The windows in the upstairs social club, that overlooks the football pitch, had been left open and the wrinkly rave tea dance (approximate title) that was going on up there was in full swing. It sounded like riotous fun compared to the 'entertainment' we were watching.
A bottle of Double Diamond, a blue rinse 'Birdie Song' free for all and a quick round of musical chairs sounded like quite an appealing alternative to another 45 minutes of the fare on offer at this Baris NCEL first division fixture.
The first half answered the age old question of 'Who put the Grim in Grimsby and who put the, err ... pleb in Appleby Frodingham (of Scunthorpe)?' ... or something similar.
Half time ... the eager anticipation of another 45 minutes of
thrills and spills is etched upon the face on the crowd

But I just about resisted the temptation and decided to give the second half fifteen minutes to improve, before I tossed a coin to decide whether I should tough it out until the bitter end or nip upstairs and bag one of the best seats for the bingo.
Against all the odds, better late than never n' all that, after the interval, a game of football broke out ... and I'm glad I hung around to see it happen.
During the first half I'd taken a number of action shots, which actually amounted to a few pictures of 'the Pods' next to the ground, with a cluster of motionless footballers standing around not doing very much in the foreground.
But whatever they put in the Grimsby Borough tea during the half time break seemed to work wonders and although Appleby Frodingham were still reluctant to get into the swing of things, the visitors came back out intent on attacking and claiming all three points on offer.
To be fair to the home side, they had played 90 minutes plus half an hours extra time, before going out of the League Cup on penalties, to Eccleshill United, just 48 hours ago, but they still looked to be moving along at pre season pace.
While the Wilderness Boys (as they're officially nicknamed), or Boro' (as most people actually call them), were now charging around like whirling dervishes and laying siege to the Steelmen's goal.
The Spion Kop

Ten minutes after the restart, the home side conceded a penalty.
Andy Taylor stepped up and struck it low, hard and on target, but Steve Barker got down and made a great save.
As the ball ran loose Luke Fanthorpe (or Like Fanthorpe as he's called in the programme) got to the rebound, before the keeper could recover and the visitors were deservedly ahead.
We pondered ... maybe the goal would serve as a wake up call for the home side.
But it didn't and six minutes later the game was as good as over, as Andy Taylor atoned for not netting from the spot, by scoring two goals in quick succession to put Grimsby 3-0 ahead.
His first strike came as he ran through onto a great knock from Luke Fanthorpe on the hour, his second came virtually from the restart.
Borough saved their best goal until last, when Jordan Ramsden broke through into the box, ignored the 'Frod' defender who clipped his heels and finished off his run with a well taken goal.
The home side can count themselves as a bit fortunate that Ramsden didn't go down, because it would've been a red card offence and you can only speculate on what the final outcome might have been with an even more lightweight rearguard offering even less resistance to a goal hungry Grimsby front line.
Sam Longman netted for the home side in stoppage time, it was actually a very good finish, but it was too little and far too late to make any difference to the final outcome.
A thoroughly deserved away win for Grimsby Borough, that elevated them up the table from 22nd position to 5th!
The match programme sold out on the night, but I got one ;-)

One final thing:
I've seen Grimsby Borough play home games at three different venues and at a number of away grounds too and, as of yet, everybody I've ever met who was associated with the club as always been really friendly and easy to get on with.
It would've been easy for them to have had a bit of a gloat at their former coach Martin Blades, who was on the Appleby Frodingham bench tonight, but that would've gone against the humility and humour that they're obviously steeped in.
So respect is due to Grimsby Borough for both their second half performance and their sporting conduct on the night.
Hopefully our paths will cross again soon ;-)