Saturday, 12 January 2013

Thorne Colliery 0 v Harworth Colliery 5 - CMFL North

Saturday 12th January 2013,
at the Welfare Ground, Grange Road, Moorends
Central Midlands League (North)
Thorne Colliery  (0) 0
Harworth Colliery  (4) 5
Chris Belshaw 20,
Gareth Sides 24,
Lee Edmondson 25,
Tom Walker 37,
Shay Dunning 72
Admission £3, Programme £1
Thorne Colliery:
Rob Chester, Jonny Lugton, Andy Gillatt, Mark Sneap, Craig Holloway, Trevor Hindson, Brett Thomas, Neil Sheppard (Lee Mills), Darren Fell, Scott Rhodes (Glenn Hookway), Callum McCormack
Subs - Ross Ebbage, Lee Dixon
Harworth Colliery:
Mark Latham, Jordan Hardman, Paul Burns, James Woodward, Si Brewster, Chris Belshaw, Tom Padgett (Jack Baines 63 mins), Tom Walker, Lee Edmondson (Tom Pick 63 mins), Gaz Sides (Shay Dunning 63 mins), Matt Smith
Subs - All used
Look busy lads, Jonny finally turned up ;-)
Thankfully, Harworth don't have any claustrophobic players, because there was barely room for them to stand, let alone sit, inside changing room number 1, in the building that is also shared with the local rugby club, who were also at home today.
I used to replace stolen copper cable for a living, so I know Moorends and the surrounding area quite well. Not that I'm meaning to sound disparaging about the place, needs must when times are hard and all that.
There was one enforced change to today's Harworth starting line up, because they had a player absent because he was attending a birthing class. And good on Craig Anderson for getting his priorities right too.
Thorne kicked off and got the game under way, on a bright and deceptively cold afternoon. But Harworth had the first attack, when Chris Belshaw broke forward from midfield, but Mark Sneap tidied things up at the back for Thorne and intercepted Belshaw's cross before it could reach Tom Walker.
And then, on four minutes, completely against the run of play, the home side tore off down the other end of the pitch and scored.
But the linesman had his flag raised for an offside infringement and it didn't count.
Paul Burns, Chris Belshaw and Gaz Sides combined down the left wing and this time their cross did find Tom Walker, who beat Rob Chester, the Thorne keeper, but shot narrowly wide of the target.
Matt Smith competed well for the ball and dispossessed Mark Sneap, before battling on into the six yard box, but his progress towards goal was blocked out by the close attentions of several defenders.
After quarter of an hour, with the Thorne defence all anticipating a regulation high, in-swinging ball into the box, Chris Belshaw played the ball along the ground to Simon Bewster who'd arrived late on the edge of the box, but Brew spanked the ball wide.
The visitors took the lead on 20 minutes, when Tom Walker flicked on a Jordan Hardman throw in and Chris Belshaw was on hand to put the ball into the net.
Harworth switched off momentarily and the home side were nearly level within a minute, but Neil Sheppard headed over from Callum McCormack's cross.
Gaz Sides was then involved in two goals in just over a minute, claiming one for himself and setting up the other for Lee Edmondson.
And it was going to be an uphill battle for Thorne now.
When I arrived at the ground, I was sat in my car keeping warm, when a very tall, bearded man, walked past and nodded in my direction by way of a 'hello'.
I responded with a friendly wave, but kept then my head down, thinking that he looked quite scary as he took a seat on the wall a few yards away.
When the teams emerged from the dressing room block a while later, I saw the tall, bearded, scary looking dude again.
Apparently he'd taken the afternoon off from filming the sequel to 'The Hills Have Eyes' to wear the home side's number 7 shirt.
As the game unfolded, it became apparent that he, Brett Thomas, was quite a useful player too.
Just after the half hour mark, he swapped passes with Darren Fell and then took aim at Mark Latham's goal, but his shot flew over the bar ... it was probably still in his line of sight though.
On 37 minutes, it was 4-0 to Harworth, when Tom Walker stepped forward and belted a twenty yard free kick, just inside the right hand post ...
... that took a slight deflection off of a Thorne defenders head, en route, but not quite enough of one to warrant calling it an own goal.
Tom Walker was fouled, as the visitors finished the half on a high. Chris Belshaw dropped the resulting free kick into the six yard box, where Matt Smith got to it first, but headed just over.
Increasingly, as the game went on, Smith was coming in for quite a lot of close attention.
But he stuck to the task in hand and didn't let it faze him unduly.
HT - Thorne Colliery 0 v Harworth Colliery 4
On 48 minutes, Thorne won a penalty.
I said to Harworth's goalkeepers mother, "Right, I'm going to get a photo of your Mark saving this".
But, in the event, all I got was a picture of a three anguished Thorne players, as Darren Fell's spot kick, flew high over the bar and out of shot.
Doubtless, Mark Latham had psyched Fell out during his run up though.
Chris Belshaw, once again, unlocked Thorne's defence with a well measured cross in from the left flank and Tom Padgett forced a double save out of Rob Chester.
On the hour, Lee Edmondson, hooked the ball into Matt Smith's path, down the right channel and the Harworth striker sprinted after it, while Rob Chester, who had been left short handed by a couple of AWOL defenders, charged out of his box in a chase to get to the ball first.
But he collided with Matt before he got anywhere near the ball and the pair of them crashed to the floor.
Obviously, Matt would've been goal side of the defence and in with a chance of scoring ... and deliberately, or otherwise, he'd been impeded.
After the referee had consulted his assistant, Thorne's goalkeeper, who had already been booked, was dismissed from the pitch and Thorne's right back, Jonny Lugton, had to take over between the sticks.
I have spoken privately to the match officials and Thorne's manager about the incident, since the final whistle, but it would be wholly inappropriate to divulge what was actually said on a self indulgent, bullshit blog, with added football content. So I won't.
Suffice to say though, the discussion was conducted in a respectful and amicable manner.
With Thorne down to ten men and Harworth sitting comfortably a four goal cushion, Brendan Wilson made a triple substitution, with Gaz Sides, Tom Padgett and Lee Edmondson, making way for, Shay Dunning, Tom Pick and new signing Jack Baines, who looks kind of familiar from somewhere.
Welcome to Harworth!
As often happens when a team are reduced to ten men, Thorne stepped up their game for a while and Mark Latham was forced into making a great stop from Craig Hookway.
While Callum McCormack knocked the ball wide of Harworth's goal after Darren Fell had set him up shortly afterwards.
In the 72nd minute, Shay Dunning knocked home a Tom Pick cross with his midriff.
Hence, Harworth's first goal of the afternoon had been scored by Belly and their last was scored via Shay Dunning's belly.
Dunning was involved again, when he won the ball in midfield and knocked it to Walker, who's final ball into the box for Smith was cleared by the Thorne defence.
Baines pass sent Smith away on a run towards Thorne's goal, but he was flattened by Brett Thomas.
Matt was receiving even more 'man marking' than ever now and he only had to wait another minute or so before Mark Sneap barged him in the back too.
The CMFL is a steep learning curve for players Matt's age, but he came through his battering with flying colours today, getting up and dusting himself down, time after time, while never showing a glimmer of retaliation towards anybody who fouled him, or caught him with a 'fair but firm' or 'slightly mistimed' challenge.
With injury time looming, Brett Thomas and Darren Fell combined out on the right flank, but Jack Baines intercepted the ball to stop them getting a cross in.
FT - Thorne Colliery 0 v Harworth Colliery 5
Thorne man of the match - Brett Thomas
Harworth man of the match - Chris Belshaw
Hopefully the weather forecast is wrong, or I won't be going very far over the next few days.