Never presume you can beat Blackpool

Blackpool Men’s 1s 4-0 West Cumbria Men’s 1s

by Peter Latimer

If you look in the Oxford English Dictionary under ‘presumptuous’ you will find the following reference – ‘a belief or assumption based on reasonable evidence’. West Cumbria arrived at Stanley Park with the belief that they were going to just turn up and walk away with three points. What they had obviously not taken into consideration was that Blackpool are the only side in the division this season with a unbeaten record and have only let in one goal.

The now completed Stanley Park Dome holds just under 65,000 people and this reporter only counted 7 untaken seats. The hot dogs are excellent and ‘The Dome’ is now the only place in the UK with a full waitress service to your seat. Whilst the two teams warmed up the crowds were treated to a full troupe of cheer leaders, who thrilled the masses whilst this weeks visiting band (Oasis) played an extensive back catalogue. The fire work display just before push back made the Millennium celebrations look tame and play was actually delayed ten minutes for the smoke to clear.

When things finally got underway Blackpool took the game to Cumbria, who seemed to be completely overawed by the occasion and the noise from the fiercely partisan crowd. Blackpool were a goal to the good inside 15 minutes as Whitley shot from a tight angle and two up after 25 minutes when Gettings scored from a penalty corner. The game was then effectively over and Blackpool seemed to want to preserve another clean sheet. After half time Blackpool kept playing their now customary passing hockey and West Cumbria were caught on the counter attack twice more before the final whistle with another strike from Whitley and a top D shot from Abbott.

All in all a good days work for the players and a great afternoon for the supporting crowd. The Blackpool side left the pitch to the sound of Oasis doing their cover of Queens ‘We are the champions’, a standing ovation and another firework display. The song that gets played every time Blackpool win a game. The Cumbrian side looked dejected and completely overawed. They truly believed that three points were theirs for the taking, but this developing Blackpool side are looking a very solid unit this season and ‘The Dome’ is becoming an impenetrable fortress. Long may it continue.

Squad – Blakemore, Woodman, Gettings, Wright, Ashfield, Morrow, Pasqualino, Abbott, Boniface, Whitley, Morgan. Man of the Match – Woodman

© Kieron Morrow 31/10/05

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