Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Linnets Win It

Yaxley are in all blue, KL in white and black.
Hopperational details
Date & Venue
Tuesday 22 February 2011 at Leading Grove
Yaxley 0  King’s Lynn Town 6
United Counties Premier League (step 5)
Just over an hour’s journey (in theory) for a midweek hop and the first time I have tried out my new Flip video camera (so apologies for shakiness on some of the clips!)
This match in one sentence
Never in doubt, to the point of tedium really, but the impressive number of KL supporters went home happy enough.
This match summed up in the approximate style of “Waiting for Godot”
Vladimir: How many is it now?
Estragon: I forget.  Five, maybe six.  Only the visitors are counting.
Vladimir: There's a man all over for you, blaming on his boots the fault of his feet.
Estragon: Yes. Time for a substitute, I think.  Maybe three.
Vladimir: Was I sleeping, while the others suffered? Am I ... sleeping now? Tomorrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of today?
Estragon: I don't know.  Ask Garth Crooks.  He might understand you.
So what?
King’s Lynn keep up the pressure on the division leaders St Neots Town.  They are now four points behind in third, but with a game in hand, and even more in hand over Newport Pagnell who are currently splitting them.  They are undefeated in all competitions since early October, and their website has already noted the dates of the FA Vase semi finals and final.  They play Rye United in the last eight.
Yaxley are in the lower reaches of the division but should have enough points to be clear of relegation.
The drama unfolds
The first goal was scored from the penalty spot by Jamie Thurlbourne within seconds of my arrival through the turnstiles, so I can’t say too much about it.  "It's going to be a long old eighty-nine minutes," said someone wise nearby.  0-1.  The second goal was a screamer and may have been the most spectacular goal I have ever seen at a “live” game.  The ball was played back by Thurlbourne J into midfield from a corner, and his brother Luke, in acres of space, had time to take a touch before sending a beauty in off the post from a trillion yards.  Well, thirty at least.  0-2.  Another penalty (harsh, I thought) from Jamie followed before half-time to complete a kind of Thurlbourne co-operative hat-trick.  Two clips (now in HD from my new gadget) give a feel for the attacking style of King's Lynn, building from the back and working their way patiently to crossing positions.  0-3 at the break.

The second penalty kick nestles in the back of the net for 0-3
Yaxley held firm for a while at the start of the second half and even managed to get the ball in the King’s Lynn half occasionally.  However, the impressive King’s Lynn debutant #9 Dubi Ogbonna  burst through and finished very well.  0-4.  A follow-up shot from Robbie Harris trickled in soon after, for 0-5, and then substitute striker Jack Defty was on hand to finish from six yards after home keeper Aaron Bellairs could not quite hold on to the ball after yet another save.

Home goalkeeper Alex Street was needed to make one excellent save in the last few minutes for his clean sheet but in all honesty this was a very straightforward win with very little for the neutral to get excited about.  The other clips capture more second-half near misses for the visitors.  Final score 0-6.  Thanks to Yaxley's website for helping me confirm the identity of the scorers.

Alternative activity of equal excitement for tourists in Peterborough
Queueing for 90 minutes at the Passport Office.  Or having your photograph taken with a cardboard cut-out of Barry Fry.  Or explaining the difference between fens and fans to a passing South African.
A snippet from the programme
Sadly, I arrived only just before kick-off and stocks had sold out.  That is a shocker for a groundhopper and I’d better keep quiet about it else I will be fined by the Royal and Ancient Order of Protective Polypocketers and Cardboard Stiffeners.
What I learned today
Yaxley’s ground is a work in progress, and has been for some time after an access dispute held up the development for the best part of a year.  Their website says that the new clubhouse should be ready for the start of next season.
Something random
Here’s a situation I found myself in today (honestly).  I need to decide whether to pursue an insurance claim for a stolen pair of spectacles.  (Don’t ask.)  They cost around £150 and there is a £60 excess on the policy.  The insurance company claims department tell me that my premium may go up next year if I claim.  Fair enough, I suppose, but I need to know by how much in order to make the decision.  So they put me through to the renewals department, who say they cannot tell me what the difference will be or what factors are taken into account.  The only course of action open to me, it seems, is a formal complaint route.  All of this exposed me to more than the Recommended Daily Amount of muzak as I surfed around the semi-automatic telephone systems of the world like a cheap version of that bloke in The Matrix.

I pointed out the bizarre inconsistency in the position of their two departments and I really hope my telephone calls (which may have been recorded for training purposes of course) pass into Aviva staff development folklore in due course, especially the bits about, “How is this consistent with the industry's stated promises of transparency and fairness?”  I may have been channelling Victor Meldrew at one point.  I certainly hope so.  I feel better for telling you about it.  Thank you for listening.
What Next?
A lie down in a darkened room.

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