Newark Town v RHP
By Francis Towndrow
Nostalgia & a win for the Town
Helping to erect and later take down the football posts at RHP last night, we could not but wonder whether that particular game, was the final fixture to be played on probably one of the most famous and historic pitches in the town. Was this an end of a special footballing heritage? Ransome & Marles were a company set up in Newark in 1900 shortly after that date the company encouraged and financially supported their employees to play sport including cricket and football in the 1920s a football pitch was laid, and a stand was built shortly after to accommodate the hundreds of supporters who were to attended games at Elm Avenue, for nearly a century after. Willie Hall, an employee of Ransomes and Marles played for his works team on that pitch where he was spotted by a Notts County Scout he later played for Tottenham and England and today he still holds the record for the fastest hat-trick scored for England 4 minutes either side of half-time at Wembley. In 1947/48 and again in 1956/57 Ramsomes lifted the Notts Saturday Senior Cup and the Sunday side won the Sunday Senor Cup in 2009 both sides playing their home fixtures on that hallowed turf. In previous years the final of the Willie Hall memorial Cup was played at Elm Avenue. With the view from behind the goal the heavy mechanical earth moving equipment could be seen preparing for the laying of two new football pitches that will form part of the Sports Village those members of the RHP Club present last night suggested that they were hoping to play their first fixture on a 3/4G surface in October.
Yesterday evening Players from both teams were missing for various reasons, including injury, stag evens overseas and holidays, etc and so the actual competitiveness and desire to win was probably less tangible than it may have been, if this game had been plated early in the season. Nevertheless, there was some good performances on both sides. For RHP Ben Hague played his normal cool and collective way in defence making some lovely passes. Thomas Potts was awarded RHP’s man of the match deservedly so with his excellent two goals and powerful running. In the second-half Luke Mc Clymont drove RHP forward from his left side position and gave RHP more of the possession than they had in the first 45 minutes. A good goal was stuck by Ronnie Kennedy of RHP.
Newark’s keeper Anthony Richardson made three excellent saves and commanded his penalty area. Town’s most improved player Jack Smith had another excellent game his defending and attacking efforts and passing were a joy to watch. Newark overall played a better passing game and with two powerful strikers Luke Parsons and Joe Braithwaite RHP defence looked vulnerable. Joe scored two goals and Luke bagged a hat-trick and both could have scored more. Early on in the game high long-balls played forwarded were cleverly flicked by the Joe Braithwaite into the path of Parsons but we are still waiting to find the balls from the resultant shots as it is believed that some might have reached the ionosphere. Having said that Luke Parsons scored three goals, one after some nice combination work with Joe Braithwaite Luke Parsons beat a defender through strength and speed and then rounded the keeper to finished what was the goal of the match. Joe Braithwaite with just second remaining should have scored his hat-trick after some nice control he rounded the keeper, but the ball was taken off his shooting boot before the trigger was fired by the keeper. For his hard work and fine efforts, neat control, heading and shooting, Joe Braithwaite well deserved his man-of-the-match award.
Final score RHP 3 NTFC 5
Well done both teams played in the right spirit likely similar in manner as those games played nearly 100 years ago on that same pitch.
The match was well refereed by David Lidster who as the man in the middle controlled well, the often a little enthusiastic manner in which the match was played out.
Thanks to RHP and in particular David Hurstfield for kindly agreeing that we could use their ground for this fixture that was scheduled as our home fixture.
Newark top of the Premier League are currently fifteen points ahead with one league game remaining.
Up the Blues!
PS:.......... word has it that two of the balls fired over the bar in the first-half by Luke Parsons have returned from their near space orbit trajectory and are ready for collection from the RHP Clubhouse.