On a blustery field in Bridlington, Town took on 5th placed Maltby Main. Blustery does not do the magnitude of the wind justice, ‘nor the freezing temperatures around the ground. Such is the dedication in non-league that few were put off from the game. In fact the match set a new season record for Town. 240 fans suffered severe weather, but were rewarded with a real end-to-end game of football.
The wind deserves some credit for the first half display by Bridlington. Hampering goal kicks from Maltby keeper Joshua Lill and causing him no end of problems. It was an entertaining and free-flowing game of football. Maltby created several nice passes in the build up, but appeared to lack that final bit of quality, or perhaps luck.
Bridlington were dangerous on the counter. Route One passing from Gary Bradshaw and Joel Sutton caused nightmares for the Maltby defence. After another fine long ball and a powerful run forward the ball found its way to the edge of the box. A neat turn on the keeper and simple pass to prolific scorer Jake Day gave him an open net to tap the ball into.
Maltby Main seemed to drop off slightly after conceding. It was a well-worked goal from Town, but luck (and the help of the wind) certainly played its part in the build up.
Joel Sutton came close shortly after Day’s goal. His shot well stopped by an on-form Maltby keeper.
Maltby looked to be through on goal, however a trip by Town’s Rikki Paylor earned Bridlington a let-off, and Paylor a yellow card.
As the game entered the half-hour mark Maltby finally found themselves in a great position. Samuel Forster, Maltby’s number 7, was 10 yards from the goal with just the Town keeper and a defender to slot past. Luckily for Bridlington his half-volley went high and wide of the mark, a reprieve for Town’s defensive mistake.
Another great long ball sent Jake Day through, but this time, uncharacteristically, Day did not punish the opposition.
Unfortunately, due to very cold hands that refused to hold a camera and write notes, we didn’t get any images of the second half. The second half started very slowly. It was as though, and we don’t blame them, they didn’t want to come back out into the Arctic conditions.
Bridlington continued their successful long-ball game. Maltby appeared to have noticed this and closed ranks efficiently as the game went on.
The only real chances came towards the end of the second half. On the 35th minute Town captain Tom Bennett had a shot superbly saved by the Maltby keeper.
Maltby also came agonisingly close to an equaliser. From just inside the box their player let loose a superb shot, only inches away from being a top-corner equaliser.
Jake Day, again breaking through the Maltby defence, found himself running toward the goal. Maltby’s keeper, alert to the danger, came charging out, taking Day completely out, and entering the book with a yellow card.
From the resulting free kick Town tried to take the ball into the corner to count down the clock. However, intentional or not, Town found themselves through on goal from either a great pass or some great luck. Tim Taylor nearly sealed the game for Town, but was met again by their in-form keeper.
In another entertaining game, Town managed to take away all three points. This win takes them up to seventh in the table, with only 9 league games to go this season the question is only how high up the table Town can manage to finish.
Maltby brought three coaches to the game. There’s no questioning their supporter’s loyalty and they made themselves vocal throughout the entire game.
Man of the Match
In the euphoria of winning, the usual method of picking the Man of the Match by the match sponsors was missed. For that reason we’re picking our own standout performer for the game. Our Man of the Match has to go to Joel Sutton. His passing was spot on and was terribly unlucky to not get onto the score sheet on numerous occasions. His pace caused problems for the Maltby defence for the full 90 minutes.
Bridlington face Dunnington in the East Riding Senior Cup Semi Final on the 20th. The game will take place at the Roy West Centre in Hull, and should be an entertaining game by two local clubs. In the league Town next face Pontefract Collieries on the 24th away.
After Bridlington’s 1-0 win they climb up to 7th.