Wigan is a semi industrial town in West Lancashire, it boasts a moderately successful football team, is the base for the JJB sports company and is the home of the pie. Not just any pie either, a truly mouth watering delicacy. A traditional Wigan pie consists of a short crust pastry base which is laid out over a 4″ diameter mould. This is then filled with slices of partially cooked potato, seasoned mince beef and a little stock. The pastry pie lid is then placed on top, crimped around the edges and a small hole cut in the top. This hole allows any steam to be released during the cooking process. I can not stress just how good a Wigan pie is. It is often overlooked in the higher echelons of French cuisine, but as a food staple it must go along side oxygen and water as an absolute must for daily existence.
Many Blackpool players over the years have shown their liking for pies. The current team is positively chocked full of pie eaters. To name a few pie lovers is like a who’s who of the Blackpool team – Gaz, Danny, Graham, Morty, Paco, Dave and even Mitch. You see you can tell a pie lover at twenty paces, because for every pie you eat there is a direct and tangible reaction on your waistline. It has been medically proved by The Australian Sports Institute that for every 32 pies you eat there is a 5 CM increase in your waistline. And just casting your eyes over the players as they line up on ceremonial duty it is plain to see that there must have been an enormous quantity of pies eaten.
All this leads very nicely to the match on Saturday. Blackpool won at a canter and were never really pressed into any where near top gear. This though seems half the problem. As many of you know I have been reporting on the mighty pool side for a number of years and I am still awaiting the game of total hockey. This is the game in which Blackpool reach their zenith, their complete peak. Everything works, everyone is at the top of their game and the opposition are just blown away. Think of Holland in the 1974 World Cup semi final or England on the Third day of the 2004 Antigua test match. Think Brazil in the Final of the 1970 World Cup – Total perfection, never to be repeated. Blackpool need to play teams that stretch them, when they play inferior teams their game drops. They are too good an outfit to lose against opposition like this but it is not pretty to watch.
All this reporter asks for is that Blackpool give to the hockey world what Wigan gave to the culinary world. Perfection. Wigan gave us pies, Blackpool please give us hockey………….
Squad: Blackmore, Woodman, Gettings, Latimer, Abbott, Pasqualino, Morrow L, Boniface, Morrow K, Whitley, Morgan, Wright, Chadwick. MoM – Latimer.
© Kieron Morrow 14/02/06