Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Ten O'Clock and Hall's Well

Ball in tree MAY be evidence of bad shooting last Saturday

Hopperational details
Tuesday 14 December 2010 at the Grass Roots Stadium, Cow Lane, Tring Athletic 1 Chalfont St Peter 0 in the step 5 South Midlands Premier League.  I am here because Gornal Athletic v Runcorn Town was postponed – that was the original game selection based on the number of times (2) that Graham Taylor said “no doubt about it” in the second half of the Spurs-Chelsea radio commentary on Sunday.  Therefore my randomness was thwarted on this occasion.
This match in one sentence
Tring shaded the goalless first half and missed several good chances, and then held on after a deserved goal with an occasional degree of desperation.
So what?
A vital and hard-fought win for Tring to keep the championship race alive, and these teams remain second and first in the table.
Who caught the eye on the pitch?
Ashley Addison had a good game up front for Tring and contributed everything except a goal before going off after 80 minutes.  However, it was captain Graham Hall who executed the game’s key moment, rising unchallenged to place a header for the only goal.  Tring hit the woodwork three times, and Chalfont once - I was hoping for two more from them for a "St Peter in Thrice-Denial Shock" headline, but sadly they kept shooting wide from good positions.
This match had the same effect on my pulse rate as …
… dressing in ridiculously coloured lycra, strapping two lubricated wooden planks on to my feet and sliding in a partially controlled manner down a one-in-ten snow-covered deforested slope in the Black Forest.
A snippet from the programme
The coverage of last Saturday’s game is bluntly honest:
“The cold weather may have temporarily gone but a chill wind is still blowing through The Grass Roots Stadium after we were bombed out of the FA Vase following this humiliating 6-1 defeat to fellow South Midlanders Dunstable Town.  The visitors … were hugely helped by some appalling defending which gifted them most of the goals.”
What I learned today

Tring supported two teams as recently as 2003 and this ground was the original home of Tring Town.  After a clubhouse fire, the board are said to have had no alternative but to accept Athletic’s offer to move in.  This event is referred to in tonight’s programme as a “historic alliance”, but on a legacy Tring Town website as more of an opportunistic takeover.  Tring Athletic’s original home in Miswell Lane is still used by the club’s other sides.  The new clubhouse has some great displays of recent Tring Athletic exploits.
Modus Hopper Random Talking Point
This game was a great advert for the non-league game at step 5.

If Chalfont had won this evening they would have had the proverbial one hand on the league trophy and a seven-point lead approaching the half-way mark.  They also have a couple of games in hand over the third and fourth-placed teams, so Tring have been the nearest challengers.  The lead is now only four points, albeit with a massively superior goal difference that will be worth one more if it comes to a crunch. 

Amazingly, Tring had lost five in a row at home in all competitions before tonight (including two in the league), and they were unceremoniously dumped out of the FA Vase by Dunstable Town at the weekend. Even more impressively, Chalfont started this season with seventeen league wins in a row, but this is a second successive defeat.  I hope I get to see either or both of these teams again on my local midweek hops.
What Next?
Can’t be certain – weather forecast is not that good.  Follow me on Twitter for announcements!  The Gornal Athletic game has been provisionally rearranged for Saturday.

No comments:

Post a Comment