Saturday, 1 September 2012

Harworth Colliery Institute 1 v Easington United 1 - CMFL North

Harworth in orange - Easington in 'glorious' maroon
Saturday 1st September, at Scrooby Road, Bircotes
Central Midlands League North
Harworth Colliery Institute (0) 1
Tom Padgett 85
Easington United (0) 1
Luke Taylor 53
Admission £3, Programme £1, Attendance 44
Communal handshakes. Wouldn't it be a better idea to have them
after a game has finished, rather than before kick off

Harworth Colliery Institute:
Mark Latham, Jordan Hardman, Josh Forbes, Shay Dunning, Stuart Needham, Chris Belshaw, David Reeve, Craig Anderson, Tom Walker, Tony Garner, Kyle Pashley
Subs - Simon Brewster, Lewis Francis, Tom Padgett, Brendan Wilson
Easington United:
Charlie Holden, Mark Wilson, Anthony Barnett, Luke Taylor, Sam McLaughlin, Andy Graham, Tom McLaughlin, Robbie Hunt, Paul Wilkinson, Craig Frost, Karl Fitzgerald,
Subs - Gavin Thurkettle, Daniel Medforth, Jimmy Neilson
I've let the dust settle a bit, before going into too much detail about this afternoon's events.
To be quite honest I would rather have written more about the rest of the game, instead of just concentrating on the whys and wherefores of the actual goals and the can of worms they've opened.
Right now, I'm really saddened that two teams I have a lot of time for and who I've stood up for in the past when misinformed individuals have bad mouthed them both ... and certain 'characters' at the two clubs, who I regard as good friends and have a lot of time and an immense amount of respect for, are at loggerheads, in the aftermath of a 1-1 draw, where, if truth be told, it would've been better for all concerned, if neither goal had ever been scored, given the controversial circumstances surrounding both of them. Two wrongs, don't make a right :-(
I did see the handball for the first goal - but these things balance themselves out over the course of a season - and I was just a few feet away from the 'drop ball' (awarded when play was stopped, when Harworth's Tom Walker sustained an injury) that the second one was scored directly from and clearly heard the Harworth manager shout "Put it out for a goal kick", while the referee asked the Easington players not to defend it.
I honestly can't say whether Tom Padgett deliberately punted the ball over Charlie Holden or merely over hit it in the general direction of the Easington goal area. But I've never seen him go for goal from that sort of range before when he was with the Under 19's.
I've spoken to both management teams afterwards about the controversy that the game ended in and for what it's worth, they both said exactly the same about what should have happened straight after the second goal went in.
But while one pair of them feel aggrieved, the other two are genuinely full of regret and remorse and know they should've done things differently.
Alas, it's too late to change things now, unfortunately.
It's been a steep learning curve for the new management team at Scrooby Road and if they ever come across such a bizarre chain of events in the future, they'll now know to deal with it next time, i.e. though there is nothing in the rules to say such a thing is mandatory, they will stand back and give the opposition a free run at goal.
But today, well, they've never had to deal with a situation like this before and at worse, they're guilty of a bit of naivety, but certainly not of cheating.
Nobody sought to gain any kind of unfair advantage by unsporting means, there was a genuine error of judgement made and it was pretty obvious that both Bren and Jonny felt sickened that, with hindsight, they should have righted a wrong.
But while emotions are still running high ... it isn't the time or place for anybody to comment further on any of the above, especially me.
I have already said far more than I ever intended to already.
Bill Shankly once (approximately) said: "Football isn't a matter of life and death, it's more important than that". Well folks, Shanks was talking crap, football is a game, a physical recreation that brings people together, especially at grass roots level.
Lets all keep our powder dry and try to not let it ruin what's left of Saturday night.
At the end of the game, two (still) unbeaten teams exchanged a few heated words as they came off the pitch, because they're as committed as hell to their respective teams and seriously give a f*ck! And in essence, there would've been no point in any of them being here if they weren't.
But the handshakes and magnanimous acceptance that 'these things happen and it's done now' from some of the Easington lads, as they were leaving the clubhouse, was greatly appreciated.
Easington's Charlie Holden ... ever so slightly fed up
For the record and in the spirit of fair paly and balance, click on the link for the Easington United website report of the game:
And here, Easington United stalwart, great bloke all round and fellow Jambo, Rich Lusmore, gives his take on a series of unfortunate events via his excallent A Game in Four Quarters blog:
BTW, Harworth's 3rd team, beat Bawtry Town reserves 1-0 in the game that was going on, on the pitch adjacent to the main ground at Scrooby Road.
Harworth Under 19's live-wire Connor Gresham scored the only goal.
Harworth 3rd's v Bawtry Town Reserves

Next up: I'll be at Ashby Avenue, Lincoln on Sunday afternoon.