Gorge

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Saturday 25th July 2015 ko 14.30

Pre-Season Friendly

CLYDACH WASPS 0

NEWPORT YMCA 5 (28, 32, 66, 78, 81)

Att 24

Entry FREE

No Programme

If I were to scroll back through my football watching, 10 years ago I simply wouldn’t have watched this. It seems to me the lot of the new groundhopper is that the potential enormity of the hobby leads to the pursuer making rules to limit the sheer volume of possibilities on any given Saturday. Some of the popular ones include, “I don’t do fields,” ” I must have a programme,” and ” I won’t do below (names a division)”

Now the trouble with any hard-and-fast rule is that as soon as you make it, someone will immediate find an equally hard-and-fast exception to it. And the Clydach Wasps are a classic example of this. Continue reading

UNESCO

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Saturday 25th July 2015 ko 12.30

Pre-Season Friendly

BLAENAVON BLUES 1 (19)

TREHARRIS ATHLETIC WESTERN 1 (37)

Att 19

Entry FREE

No Programme

As far as I’m concerned Blaenavon in Torfaen is the home of the “Big Pit” the national coal mining museum of Wales, and if you haven’t paid the place a visit, have a read of this and do what I didn’t do, and combine it with a visit to Blaenavon Blues’ Memorial Ground. You can, after all, see the Big Pit from the pitch! Continue reading

Dickie Davies’ Eyes

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Tuesday 21st July 2015 ko 19.15

Pre-Season Friendly

TRETHOMAS BLUEBIRDS 1 (Spain 3)

BARRY TOWN UNITED 1 (Fahiya 89)

Att c200

Entry £3

Programme £1

When I was growing up in Oxford my footballing routine was to cycle to my grandmother’s house before heading off to the Manor Ground. Afterwards Dad and I would have a cup of tea in willow-pattern cups whilst watching the football results on her Rediffusion television.

Sometimes it was on the BBC’s “Grandstand,” and sometimes is was on ITV’s “World of Sport.” If it was the ITV option then there was the added bonus of the rugby results, both Union and League too. Now I soon wondered where all those football and rugby clubs were, and I’m indebted to Dad for simply handing over the road atlas and telling me to look them up for myself, although I haven’t quite forgiven him for the likes of Port Vale and St Mirren! But those Welsh rugby clubs held an almost exotic quality for a small boy from the shires, and as I travel from town to town its wonderful to link what I’m seeing back to that Rediffusion TV. Continue reading

State of Play

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Sunday 12th July 2015 ko 14.30

Mayo League: Super League

MANULLA 0

CASTLEBAR CELTIC 1 (O’Boyer 62)

Att 57

Entry €5

No Programme

The 4th game of this mini-Irish tour was meant to be a trip to UCD of Dublin, but their success in the Europa League qualifier the previous Thursday saw their scheduled game postponed, with no other League of Ireland games scheduled. I am grateful to Chris Bedford the publisher of the Football Traveller for contacting me to inform us of the bad news. Of course news is only bad news if you can’t spin it to your advantage, and it did give the party an interesting dilemma. Continue reading

There was a young man

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Saturday 11th July 2015 ko 18.30

League of Ireland- Premier Division

LIMERICK 2 (Faherty 33 Turner 82p)

GALWAY UNITED 4 (Keegan 12 61 74 Shanahan 81)

Att 650

Entry €15

Programme €4

Badge €3

I first visited the Republic of Ireland when I was 11. My scout troop camped near a small town called Castletown Bere on Bantry Bay, and other than quickly finding out why Ireland is the “Emerald Isle” my abiding memory of the place was just how long it look to get there. Now it has to be said a fleet of cars including 2 Morris Oxfords and a Morris Ital on single track roads was never likely to be fast, but I do remember upon my return grabbing Dad’s road atlas and being surprised at it only being 190-odd miles from the ferry port of Rosslare.

Continue reading

The Path Less Trodden

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Friday 10th July 2015 ko 19.45

League of Ireland First Division

CABINTEELY 0

SHELBOURNE 1 (English 55)

Att 620

Entry €10

Programme €3

The previous day I’d spent a faintly boring few minutes strolling round the bookshop at the airport. These days the sport section is full of Premier League players’ ghost-written “auto”-biographies, and for the most part they follow a similar pattern. Usually a child is discovered by a club, then quickly graduates through the ranks, makes his first team debut, then fame and fortune follow. But what happens to those who for one reason or another don’t make it? Continue reading

Island of Sheep

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Thursday 9th July 2015 ko 19.45

Europa League 1st Qualifying Round 2nd Leg

ST PATRICK’S ATHLETIC 0

SKONTO RIGA 2 (Sorokins 37 Karasavkas 59p)

Skonto win 4-1 on aggregate

Att 2,345

Entry €15 (c £10.59)

Programme €3

St Pats have their own seagull. That’s right, a seagull and she sits atop a floodlight casting a beady eye on proceedings below, and isn’t adverse to attacking visitors who she thinks are threatening her nest in the stand. Richmond Park is in the Inchicore (in gaelic “Island of Sheep”) suburb in the west of Dublin, and is named after the former British army base here. Nearby is the preserved Kilmainham Jail where several members of the 1916 Rising were executed. Continue reading

Sphinx

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Tuesday 7th July 2015 ko 19.00

Pre-Season Friendly

COVENTRY SPHINX 3 (Thompson 51 Evangelinos 80 Jayes 90)

RACING CLUB WARWICK 0

Att 41 at Pitch 3, Sphinx Drive

Entry FREE

Programme FREE

I have to confess that I tend to read “Sphinx” and think of “Carry on Cleo” and the appalling joke, “Why the sphinx in Egypt? That’s because they have no drains.” The unusual suffix is due to the ground being the former Hawker-Siddley Motors works ground; the Sphinx was the firm’s badge. Continue reading

Khalsa

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Saturday 4th July 2015

Khalsa Football Federation Shaheedi Football Tournament

9.00am Division Two First Round – Pitch 5

GURU RAVIDAS 1 (7)

SMETHWICK RAIDERS 2 (62 74)

Att 10

10.45 Division One First Round – Pitch 4

NUNEATON FC 2 (51 54)

GNP SPORTS COVENTRY 5 (6p 13 22 43 90)

Att 11

12.30 Premier Division First Round – Pitch 2

GNG LEICESTER 4 (42 52 57 85)

SINGH BROTHERS DERBY 4 (23 49 64 90p)

No extra time Leicester won 4-3 on penalties

Att 53

14.30 Division Two Second Round – Pitch 1

SIKH HUNTERS RESERVES 2 (3 33)

B.N.J.S. 3 (5 25 49)

Att 18

16.30 Division One Second Round – Pitch 7

SHERE PUNJAB WOLVES 0

SINGH SABHA BARKING 4 (23 51 56 73)

Att 14

At Sinfin Moor Park, Sinfin Lane, Derby

Entry FREE

Programme FREE

Vegetable Curry and Chapatti FREE

The Khalsa Football Federation exists as means of uniting Britain’s Sikh community through football, and its flagship event is a series of two-day football tournaments hosted in areas where there is a significant Sikh community. This was the 3rd of 5 tournaments, the next being in Kingswinford on 18th and 19th July. More information is on the KFF’s website.

Continue reading

The White Mark

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The White Mark, Hill Road, Watlington, Oxfordshire.

About two years I paid Watlington Town FC a visit and in my sloppy way I looked up the small town’s claim to fame afterwards, missing out on a great photographic opportunity. Because Watlington’s claim to fame is the White Mark, and millions of people have passed close by without either seeing it, or learning its secret. Continue reading

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