Gargrave AFC

Gargrave 4 – 1 Grindleton

March 2, 2009

Grindleton were this weeks opponents for an in form Gargrave side who were looking to continue their recent winning streak.

Despite playing on a pitch that resembled Wembley (after an American football game) Gargrave found Grindleton a tough team to break down, despite enjoying the majority of the possession.

It was a frustrating 1st half for the home side, and this was demonstrated when Oliver Hurst, still reeling from Ryan Airs decision to charge people to use the toilets, found himself in the referees book, making him the most cautioned player in Gargrave’s history. An award that will disappoint the previous record holder Jock Bradburry who picked up 17 yellow cards in the 1938/39 season.

It looked like the score would remain goalless leading into the half time interval, but with not long to go (probably) Gargrave put together some good passes down the right wing and a cross into the box was met on the volley by the ever auburn Paul Wilkin to make it 1 – 0 to Gargrave.

Despite the set back Grindleton were not disheartened and they managed to bring the game back level just before half time.

Gargrave went into the changing rooms at half time, manager Boatwright wore sunglasses.

The 2nd half started with the referees whistle.

With neither teams able to take control of the game, it was left to Gargrave captain Liam Jameson to produce a moment of magic as he fired in an unstoppable volley from the edge of the area to make it 2 – 1 to Gargrave.

Then came the defining moment of the game, when a highly dubious penalty decision gave Grindleton the chance to level the game. Thankfully for Gargrave the Grindleton striker resembled David Bently as he put the spot kick wide of the post.

This seemed to give Gargrave the boost they needed, and they took the score to 3 – 1 when little Al Tudhope produced a fine finish to increase his seasons goal tally to 1.

The game was then wrapped up as Paul Wilkin scored his 2nd goal of the game, firing a tap in into the roof of the net.

Final Score: 4 – 1
Attendance: 11 (a 95% increase on the previous week)

Long Lee 1 – 1 Gargrave

February 24, 2009

It was the battle of the Craven Leagues top clubs as top of the table Long Lee juniors played host to 2nd placed Gargrave at the Marley recreational sports centre.

A strong wind was blowing across the pitch which would prove to hamper both teams, but as the game started it was Gargrave who looked the most likely to take the lead with top scorer Ben Brown missing some chances that on other days would surely have found the back on the net.

Long Lee also did their best to break the deadlock, but they found the re-shuffled Gargrave defence difficult to penetrate, with Kristian Hodgson and Matthew Brennand both making claims for a regular starting place.

The first half came to a close with very little to choose between the 2 teams. Christian Moon did his bit at half time by dishing out water bottles for his team mates, whilst also showing his slight OCD tendencies by making sure there was never an uneven number of water bottles in the bottle holder. (If he see’s any items grouped unevenly he has to tap his left ear 3 times and his right ear 4 times to cancel it out)

The 2nd half then got underway, but the water bottles must have been put back unevenly as Long Lee started to get the upper hand, forcing a number of corners and free kicks, which eventually lead to a well taken goal making in 1 – 0 to the hosts.

Gargrave continued to fight back, but they thought lady luck might not have been on their side when midfielder Oliver Hurst fell to the ground with what seemed like a serious injury. Luckily the injury was not as serious as first thought, when it was revealed the problem was caused by right back Al Tudhope using Hurt’s mentula as a rope, causing a slight hyper-extension. Hurst was able to run the injury off and was soon back in the thick of the action.

With around 10 minutes to go, it looked like Gargraves chances of bringing the game level had gone. But a goal mouth scramble allowed the returning Joel “Less than 50% of my sandwiches contain salmonella” Timmins to back heel the ball into the net to bring the game level.

Gargrave could then have snatched a late winner when Oliver Hurst found himself 1 on 1 with the keeper but he pulled his shot wide.

The game finished 1 – 1, with both teams pleased not to have lost the game.

Clitheroe 1 – 2 Gargrave

February 16, 2009

Gargrave made the trip to Clitheroe knowing there would be a lot of obstacles to overcome if they wanted to keep there unbeaten streak alive.

The first of these obstacles was the pay and display car park that has claimed many a Gargrave victim in the past. Luckily 2 hours WAS enough time to get changed, play a game of football, get changed again and make it back to the car without getting a ticket.

With the tricky 1st obstacle overcome, Gargrave ventured into the rustic changing rooms to get ready for the not so local Clitheroe derby. It was here we learnt that Kristian Hodgson purchased not only some flowers, and not only some baloons – he actually had them delivered to his girlfriend in a van, possibly a ford transit van, valentines day is alive and kicking in the Gargrave squad.

After the shock of hearing this news, Gargrave were forced to confront an unexpected obstacle that arrived in the form of Clitheroe council.

Craven Herald letter writers get your pens primed, because we know where all the grit has gone!

Big patches of sandy grit (not cockney rhyming slang) were found on the playing surface, and the referee deemed this unsafe and ordered a change of pitch. The nets were taken down and quickly put up on an adjoining pitch that contained slightly fewer patches of sandy grit, the game then finally got underway.

In truth watching the nets been moved from pitch to pitch was probably more exciting to watch than the actual game. Both teams found the surface tough to play on, and neither were able to string any meaningful moves together.

Gargrave eventually took the lead when a long free kick was….booted forward by centre back Lee Barrett, Clitheroe failed to clear the ball and it fell to the feet of Gargrave captain Liam Jameson who slotted the ball home from close range.

Clitheroe managed to create a couple of good chances before half time but were denied by some good saves from Gargrave keeper Stewart Wilson.

Manager Boatwright said some words at half time, but they were mostly forgettable.

The 2nd half began as the 1st left off, with both teams unable to create any clear cut chances.

It remained this way until around 20 minutes from the end, when a Clitheroe corner was headed in at the far post, despite James Wilkin standing directly on the post. From some angles it looked like the ball actually went through his head.

The score didn’t stay level for long however, as Gargrave went up the other end of the pitch and a snap cross/shot from Ben Brown somehow managed to find it’s way past the Clitheroe keeper and into the net, leaving Clitheroe somewhat despondent.

The most exciting moment of the game was still to come though, with Oliver Hurst and a Clitheroe player both seeing red after their valentines day scuffle – apparently Oliver had sent the Clitheroe player a box of Quality Street when he had specifically asked for a box of Celebrations.

Waddington 1 – 3 Gargrave

February 2, 2009

It was a game of two pitches, rather than a game of two halves as Gargrave traveled (some further than others MOON) to Waddington for this Craven League encounter.

Gargrave started the game defending in the “beach” half of the pitch, the quicksand traps set out by Waddington seemed to be working as the opening encounters were very even with Waddigton try to take advantage of the conditions.

It was Gargrave that took the lead though when Paul Wilkin took the ball away from goal, and whilst it looked like the chance had gone, he managed to square the ball to Ben “The Bachelor” Brown who calmly slotted home from close range to give Gargrave the lead.

This seemed to settle Gargrave down, but Waddington came back and caught Gargrave on the break leaving the defence outnumbered, this allowed the Waddington winner to run down the pitch unchallenged and he made no mistake firing his shot past the Gargrave keeper Stewart Wilson from a tight angle.

Gargrave continued to fight and were almost rewarded when a stray turtle shell took down Christian Moon on the edge of the box, and Richard Orme’s resulting free kick would have sailed into the top corner if it wasn’t for the acrobatics of the Waddington keeper.

He could do nothing about Gargraves second goal however, and it came courtesy of the worlds angriest person, Oliver Hirst. Hirst picked the ball up in midfield and ran at the Waddington defence, unleashing a fierce shot that clipped the underside of the cross bar before settling in the back on the net to make it 2 – 1 to the visitors.

The score remained the same at the half time interval, where manager Boatwright continued to wear his glasses, despite some libelous claims about then from a section of the Gargrave squad.

The second half began where the first left off, but this time Gargrave were playing down into the quicksand. Despite this the game remained level, and Waddington looked like they could perhaps come back into the game as Gargrave squandered a lot of good chances, but they eventually increased their lead thanks to a confident finish from top scorer Ben Brown.

The rest of the game was played out with neither side troubling the score sheet and it finished 3 – 1 to Gargrave.

Gargrave 4 – 0 Skipton Town

January 26, 2009

Gargrave returned to home action this week as they faced bottom of the table Skipton Town in a local derby.

They didn’t get off to a good start however, when inspirational midfielder Simon Boatwright failed a late fitness test on his finger. This meant that the plague-ridden Richard Orme was forced to deputise for him in central midfield.

Before the game could get underway, Gargrave held a minutes applause for the brand new match ball that was purchased DURING the credit crunch – mavericks!

With the new match ball initiation complete, Skipton Town got the game underway. Despite being bottom of the table, Skipton Town showed that they weren’t going to lie down as they battled a strong Gargrave side.

Gargrave came close to taking the lead when everyone’s favourite mobile sandwich delivery man Joel Timmins broke through the Skipton Town defence, only to have his shoulder pop out of place just as he was about to pull the trigger. This lead manager Boatwright to bring off Timmins and replace him with top scorer Ben Brown.

Town continued to hold their own until a rash tackle on the edge of the area allowed Ben Brown to slot home the resulting free kick after some questionable wall positioning.

Gargrave began to dominate but were unable to add to their lead bringing the half to a close with Gargrave leading 1 – 0.

The 2nd half started after the 1st.

The next goal was always going to be crucial, and it came (possibly) through a Ben Brown penalty. Some good dribbling by Christian Moon, combined with a lucky touch took him into the Skipton Town penalty box where he was chopped down by a Town defender. Brown made no mistake slotting home the spot kick in the usual place. (If you are a visiting team keeper reading this, he always hits it down the middle so don’t dive)

The 2nd goal seemed to take the wind out of the Skipton Town sails as Gargrave started to impose themselves on the game. A 3rd goal was added by Paul Wilkin who finished well from close range.

The best goal of the game was still to come, and it came from captain Liam Jameson.

A searching cross from the right of the pitch made it’s way towards Jameson who was stood on the edge of the area with his back to goal. He proceeded to leap into the air and managed to connect with an overhead bicycle kick with his weaker left foot, the ball sailed past the stranded keeper into the top corner of the net. IT DIDN’T JUST HIT HIS LEG FROM 4 YARDS OUT AND GO IN.

Gargrave played out the rest of the game and were happy with keeping a clean sheet.

Pendle 1 – 5 Gargrave

January 19, 2009

Gargrave finally made their return to Craven League action as they took on Pendle Athletic at Victory Park in Barnoldswick.

Gargrave arrived to find an impressive new changing facility, upon seeing this Christian Moon remarked that “It must be the only building in Barnoldswick that doesn’t have any smashed up windows and graffiti.” Al Tudhope didn’t like this and told him to stop making “such stereotypical statements, Barnoldswick is a place full of character and history.”

The two agreed to disagree and walked inside the new changing facilities. Richard Orme thought the tap handles were very similar to those in his girlfriend’s house.

The match was always going to play second fiddle to the new changing facilities, but it needed to be played and Gargrave promoted Veteran centre half Lee Barrett from the 2nd team and he made an immediate impact by putting up one of the goal nets so the game could get underway.

Both teams looked rusty and the first 10 minutes were played out at a frantic pace with both teams struggling to impose themselves on the game. Both teams started to find their feet and Gargrave took the lead when a pin point long ball found captain Liam Jameson who took 1 touch to control the ball and then another to volley home into the roof of the net making the scoreline 1 – 0 to Gargrave.

Pendle came back strong and forced a number of corners, it was from one of these that Pendle scored and brought the game level after some bad marking from the visitors.

This only seemed to anger the sleeping Dragons as they started once again to go looking for blood. (goals)

They were soon rewarded when adventurer Joel Timmins found himself 1 on 1 with the keeper and made no mistake in slotting the ball home to make it 2 – 1 to Gargrave. Sir Ranolf would have been proud.

The referee’s whistle brought the half to a close. Manager Boatwright concluded that Gargrave were playing at 70% of their possible output, but in truth everyone was too busy laughing at his bizarre tinted glasses to take any notice. “They are for my eye’s” he said; a true statement if ever there was one.

Gargrave started the 2nd half well, with Lee Barrett rolling back the years and marshaling the young Gargrave defence, this restricted Pendle to very few chances on goal.

The only danger seemed to be when Gargrave keeper Stewart Wilson decided to play a game of Chicken with the Pendle striker after a back pass, luckily it came to nothing and Gargrave took the lead when Richard Orme scored with a bullet header, which of course, he dedicated to his new girlfriend. He actually arrived quite late to the game because he had to drop his girlfriend off at his girlfriends house because his girlfriend didn’t have a car. Next time he’s going to bring his girlfriend with him to watch him play because his girlfriend quite likes football.

The 3 – 1 deficit was always going to prove difficult for Pendle to come back from, and it was made even harder when some good work by man of the match Ben Brown set up Joel Timmins for his second goal of the game. Timmin’s proceeded to shed a tear and dedicated the goal to all those great people that have gone off to discover new frontiers and never returned.

With Gargrave now dominating the game, they added a fifth, and final goal when substitute, and fellow explorer Paul Wilkin scored from close range firing into the roof of the net to make it 5 – 1 to Gargrave.

The rest of the game was played out with Gargrave pleased to have restarted the season with a win after the winter lay-off.

Barnoldswick Town Res 4 – 1 Gargrave

December 22, 2008

Despite the previous days torrential rain, the Craven Cup tie between Barnoldswick Town and Gargrave went ahead as planned, thanks to some rapid sand spreading by the Silentnight Stadium grounds man.

Unfortunately for Gargrave, a number of their players had anything but a silent night the previous evening as “Builders Friday” claimed some noticeable victims. To get around this yearly problem, Gargrave’s builders contingent planned to turn “Builders Friday” into “Builders Wednesday”, unfortunately, being builders, they turned up 3 days late. (Insert “ba doom tish” sound effect here)

One player might have wished he had used the “Builders Friday” excuse, as manager Boatwright let slip that “Rocket Man” Oliver “Candle In The Wind” Hurst “Are You Ready For Love” Hurst “The Bitch Is Back” Hurst “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me” Hurst “Daniel” Hurst “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” Hurst “I’m Still Standing” Hurst had missed the game due to an Elton John concert.

And with almost 2 paragraphs of excuses written down, you can probably tell that the game didn’t go very well for the Dragon’s.

Barnoldswick kicked off and dominated immediately, having a number of shots on goal, luckily for Gargrave the Barnoldswick strikers had bananas stuffed into their boots, causing the long shots to go way off target.

Gargrave then went a goal behind in unfortunate circumstances as Barnoldswick scored directly from a corner that looped in at the back post, just evading the alice band of Gargrave’s Matthew Brown on the back post.

The initial Barnoldswick onslaught had left the out of shape Gargrave defence for want of a better word – knackered, and a through ball past Dan Thompson’s (I’m a man, I can take criticism) tired right leg allowed the 8ft 2″ Barnoldswick striker to round the keeper and slot home into an empty net to make it 2 – 0.

To Gargrave’s credit they didn’t let their heads drop and created a couple of chances of their own, the most notable being a free kick on the edge of the area, that Ben Brown managed to hit over the Barnoldswick club house behind the goal, which must surely signal that it’s time for a certain defender to take free kicks from now on. (Me, not Wilkin)

The teams went in at half time with the score remaining 2 – 0 to Barnoldswick. Manager Boatwright wasn’t disheartened however as he had seen his team come back from bigger deficits in the past. His rowsing team talk seemed to have an effect on midfielder Sam Watson who started to steam like a horse.

Unfortunately it didn’t have the same effect on the rest of the Gargrave team as Barnoldswick scored 2 more goals at the beginning of the 2nd half, leaving manager Boatwright scratching his head and checking his portable Football Manager 2009 tips n’ tricks book for guidance.

The book told him to substitute left back James Wilkin and bring on Gargrave legend Simon Boatwright. This seemed to add more balance to the team and Gargrave scored a consolation goal through the cultured right foot of Paul Wilkin.

In truth the scoreline could have been a lot more flattering to Barnoldswick if they had taken their chances, but some bad shooting and heroic goal keeping from Adam Hudson kept the score at a somewhat respectable 4 – 1 to the hosts.

But the game will always be overshadowed by the fact that Oliver Hurst missed a game to go to an Elton John concert.

Gargrave 2 – 0 WFC Clitheroe

November 23, 2008

Gargrave played host to WFC Clitheroe in this weeks game at the Rabbits Warren pavilion. Despite the near freezing conditions a capacity crowd was on hand to witness one of the most exciting games of the season so far.

As the game commenced, both teams began to play some fantastic local football that wouldn’t have looked out of place at a higher level. It was Gargrave that took the lead mid way through the 1st half when the chestless (Verb: to have no chest) Ben Brown rounded the keeper, only to be brought down as he looked ready to slot the ball into an empty net.

Despite the protests of the Clitheroe number 7, the penalty was given and Ben Brown followed on from his goal last week and slotted home the spot kick. This seemed to incense the Clitheroe number 7 even more, but his exasperation did nothing to adhere himself to the capacity Gargrave crowd who began to chant..

“We could Possibly Play Football As Well, If Not Better Than You…Number 7….OOOOO…AAAAA…OOOO…AAAA….Number 7″ (x3)

Unfortunately Gargrave’s fans are somewhat lacking when it comes to creating songs.

After the goal Clitheroe decided to push men forward and go all out  to attack in the hopes of leveling the game. Unfortunately they found the uncompromising mad dog Joel Timmins in unbeatable form at the heart of the Gargrave defence.

The game remained level at half time, and Gargrave went into the stinky changing rooms knowing that the next goal would be crucial. Manager Boatwright shared his words of wisdom with the team..

“In football manager, I’d drag a forward arrow on Al Tudhope and take off Christian Moons make inward runs option…so do that”

And in the second half Gargrave did.

Al Tudhope received the ball, and proceeded to run in the direction that arrow told him to. He eventually laid the ball off to Christian Moon, who followed his instruction to the letter and ran down the wing, eventually playing a dangerous ball across the box which found it’s way to the tango based Paul Wilkin who made no mistake from 3 yards out.

Gargrave always looked in control after the 2nd goal and played out the rest of the game for what in the end, turned out to be a comfortable victory, however there were still a few noteable points to come.

1. The Clitheroe number 8 was sick on the pitch

2. A Clitheroe player has an irrational hatred of fizzy orange based drinks, and decided to take it out on Paul Wilkins leg

3. Oliver Hurst came on as a sub for the last 10 minutes and didn’t get booked

Man of the match was awarded to the Gargrave midfielder Richard Orme (Yeah, seriously, Richard Orme!) who managed to play the full 90 minutes, despite having to rush off after the game so he didn’t miss a flight to Kiev.

Match ball Sponsor: Tim Lawson. Personal Accident Insurance Cover for work, rest and play. Tel: 07860614372.

Gargrave 6 – 1 Bentham

November 17, 2008

The league games made way for the Craven Challenge Cup this week with Gargrave playing hosts to Bentham at the Eagles Nest memorial ground. Bentham arrived in a mini-bus, whilst Ben Brown arrived in a car.

The game got underway, and both teams seemed to be coping well with the heavy playing conditions which weren’t helped by Gargrave’s micro-climate, consisting of 90% rain, and 7% drizzle. (3% of weather remains unaccounted for)

Gargrave however started to impose themselves on the visitors, and it wasn’t long before they took a deserved lead. Some good build up play from the Wilkin brothers (like the Neville brothers but a little more auburn) lead to confusion in the Bentham box, the ball finally dropping to Christian Moon who finished with all of the coolness and composure of Gargrave’s top scorer and substitute for the day Ben Brown.

Moon soon scored what could only be described as his 2nd goal of the game shortly after. Faced with only the goalkeeper and a selection of defenders to beat, Moon coolly slotted home to give Gargrave a 2 goal cushion. After the goal, Moon pointed over to someone in the stand and mouthed “That was for you”, we later found out it was Ben Brown.

To their credit, Bentham refused to lie down and began to fight back but they found Gargrave goalkeeper Adam Hudson on top form. Gargrave looked like going into half time with the 2 – 0 lead, but Bentham managed to sneak a goal back after a shot took a double deflection and left the Gargrave keeper with no chance. Ben Brown threw his water bottle down in disgust.

Despite getting “impress” mixed up with “impose” Eg:

“You need to impress yourselves on the game”

Manager Boatwright’s half time team talk seemed to do the trick, as Gargrave came out like the proverbial house on fire, and it wasn’t long before they restored their 2 goal lead with Joel Timmins breaking through the Bentham defense and slotted the ball home past the onrushing keeper, Ben Brown “luved it when Joel scored that goal, luved it.”

The best goal of the game was still to come, and it can from left winger Paul “It would be unfair to mention anything bad about his tan again” Wilkin. Some great build up play from St Nicholas Kendall and Christian Moon allowed Wilkin to rifle home into the roof of the net, in what can only be described as a Ben Brown like finish.

Gargrave continued to look threatening everytime they went forward and added 2 more goals through substitute Ben Brown and Paul Wilkin.

Both teams played out the final 10 minutes without incident, although Ben Brown did make some good runs but he was unable to add to the Gargrave total, despite his best efforts. Gargrave ended the game as deserved winners and will go on to play Barnoldswick in the next round of the Craven Cup, scheduled to be played on the 20th December.

Ball Sponsor: Tim Lawson. Personal Accident Insurance, covering work, rest and play. TEL: 07860614372

Oxenhope 0 – 6 Gargrave

November 9, 2008

The Dragon’s ventured through the middle of Keighley on a busy Saturday afternoon and eventually made it to the Oxenhope sports ground for a mid-table Premier division encounter.

Captain Liam Jameson performed with great spirit and determination by winning the toss and choosing to change ends, allowing Gargrave to play the first half going up the famous slope of doom.

The game started very evenly with Gargrave defending well against a competitive Oxenhope team, managing to restrict them to very few shots on goal.

Gargrave always looked threatening up front with the pace of lone striker Ben Brown, and wing men Jamie Cartman and Paul Wilkin. It was the pace of Brown that brought Gargrave the 1st goal, he broke through the Oxenhope back line and shot past the keeper, with the ball trickling into the net Jamie Cartman was on hand to make sure from close range.

The 2nd goal came shortly after, and it came from an unusual source. The ball dropped in the area and at the 2nd attempt, Wilsden resident and Oxenhope local Richard Orme volleyed home an unstoppable shot with his cultured left foot. The celebrations almost surpassed the goal, with Orme running away pointing to a group of houses on the horizon and shouting “THAT’S MY HOUSE THAT IS”.

Gargrave took the 2 – 0 lead into half time and were pleased to have kept Oxenhope off the score sheet in the 1st half, with Gargrave now playing down the slope they knew more goals were possible.

They got off too a nervy start however, with Oxenhope winning around 17 corners in the opening 5 minutes of the 2nd half. Gargrave again defended well, and managed to score a 3rd through prolific striker Benjamin Brown.

In scoring the goal, Ben Brown proved once again that he is infact made out of glass, after a collision with the keeper meant he couldn’t continue, which meant substitute Kevin Newhouse had around 30 minutes to make his mark on the game.

And make his mark he did with an un-stoppable shot from the edge of the area, giving the keeper no chance and bringing Gargrave’s tally for the game to 4.

Gargrave weren’t finished, and a 5th goal was soon added by the orange skinned Paul Wilkin who calmly placed his shot into the bottom corner of the Oxenhope net.

The away side looked like scoring every time they went forward, but there was only one more goal to come, and again, it was from the substitute Kevin Newhouse. A trademark burst into the box by Newhouse was followed by a rash tackle from an Oxenhope defender, referee Mr W Naylor had no hesitation in blowing his loud whistle and pointing to the penalty spot.

Newhouse immediately grabbed the ball and placed it on the spot. He wasn’t going to let anyone else have the penalty and the rest of his team soon found out why. He powered home the penality, and ran away jubilant in his celebrations, dedicating both of his goals to the new US president in waiting, Barack Obama.

Gargrave’s man of the match was the tireless midfielder Sam “Ginger Peril” Watson, and a special mention to little Al Tudhope, who ran his little socks off, up and down that not so little slope.

Ball Sponsor: Tim Lawson. Personal Insurance cover for work,rest or play. Please call Tim for further details: 07860614372

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