Blackpool Men’s First team had to dig deep against a strong Timperley side to win 4-3 at Stanley Park. The opening minutes set the tempo for the game as both teams had chances to take the lead. Blackpool could easily have been two up, but failed to capitalize on two one-on-one opportunities with the Timperley goal keeper making some fine saves. The deadlock was was broken when Mariano De La Lastra scored a superb individual goal beating several defenders before finding the bottom corner with a reverse shot. Timperely were soon back on level terms after a mix up in the Blackpool defence. Blackpool re-took the lead after James Slater’s lay off to Dave Morgan at a penalty corner allowed the later to slap the ball past the helpless keeper. However, Blackpool were architects of their own misfortune as yet another communication error at the back allowed a simple tap in for Timperley to head into half time with the scores level.
With anything short of a win effectively killing Blackpool’s promotion hopes, the second half was to be pivotal in the season for the home side. After a debatable penalty corner was awarded to the visitors, Blackpool were unlucky to go behind after a wicked deflection left goal keeper Nick Rainbow stranded. Blackpool pressed hard and did everything apart from score. First they hit the post after a great passing move which brought applause from the increasing crowd, and to make matters worse they had a goal disallowed after the umpire blew the whistle in Blackpool’s favour and didn’t allow enough advantage.
With fifteen minutes to go, Blackpool were in total control of the possession, but still found themselves behind. With tempers flaring, the umpires called both captains to calm their players down and that seemed to be the key to turn the game around for Blackpool. Within seconds Blackpool were back level again after a flowing move involving 7 of the 10 outfield players was finished off by Morgan. Blackpool then made it 4-3 after Morgan’s hatrick attempt was twice denied before the ball fell to Ian Swaine who swept the ball home.
A nervous final five minutes followed, but Blackpool held their nerve to take the valuable three points, and stay in the race for the second promotion spot.
By Rob Dingle