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Reserves Denied Promotion
By: Martin Copass
ON a warm and sunny afternoon, Town reserves still had a slim chance of promotion to the premier league, but this afternoon's performance and a result elsewhere meant they are staying exactly where they are.
The team had a familiar look about it apart from West Ham trialist Billy Mehmet, but the visitors defence kept Town at bay and they had to rely on tame long-range efforts from David Soames and Stephen Downes. It was the same at the other end however as yet again it seemed a day of little activity for both goalkeepers.
Graham Hockless was having a fine game for Town, and the out of favour Rowan was appearing in midfield, not the first time he has done so this season. Half time arrived, and the performance suggested that the win they needed to keep promotion hopes alive was a long way off unless it got better in the second half.
Unfortunately this was not the case, as the visitors looked more likely to take the lead, a fine effort from Allsop was week saved by keeper Pettinger, and, but for dreadful finishing by the same striker Allsop, they would have been one up after 68 minutes, but he missed from just three yards out when scoring was surely the easier option. All three substitutes were used during the half, but it made little difference however as it seemed that Town could find no way through a hard working County defence.
More long range efforts came from Town, but the visitors keeper Garden may as well been sat in his garden as he hard hardly been troubled at all by a hard working but ineffective Town strike force. This all changed however with five minutes to go, when a long punt from keeper Pettinger found itâ€™s way through to trialist Mehmet and he made no mistake from close range. More pressure followed, but the wining goal never really looked on and it would have been an injustice to Notts County had Town got it.
In the end, the result was irrelevant, because Hartlepool beat Scunthorpe United to clinch second place and promotion to the premiership division. It is not as bad as it sounds though, because although it has the title â€˜premiershipâ€™ it consists of teams from the first division downwards and not the glory teams that one may expect to see.
Full Time: Grimsby Town 1 Notts County 1
Town Pettinger, Downes, Hyams, Rowan, Wheeler, Ward, Hildred, Soames, Sagre, Mehmet, Hockless.
Subs. Carchedi, Hughes (GK), Newton, Davy, Heggarty
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