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Luton 1 Grimsby 2

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 23/08/2003

GRIMSBY held on at Kenilworth Road to record their first win of the season against a Luton side who before the game had held a 100% record in league and cup competitions.

Grimsby commanded the game during most of the first half and Town took the lead in the 34th minute when midfielder Iain Anderson scored his third goal of the season with a fantastic blast from just outside the penalty area.

They almost doubled their lead just before the break when Marcel Cas narrowly missed what would certainly have won goal of the season. The Dutch midfielder picked the ball up deep in the Grimsby half, ran the full length of the pitch and around two Luton defenders, before unleashing a fierce drive from just outside the penalty area which clipped the top of the Luton cross bar.

Town had to endure a Luton onslaught for most of the second period, but defended well, with former-Pompey fullback Jason Crowe outstanding in Town's rear guard. The home side had numerous penalty appeals turned down by the referee. Then Michael Boulding doubled Grimsby's lead against the run of play with a header in front of the away following, after Luton were caught on the break.

Grimsby rarely seem to defend anything but a one goal lead, and the endless Luton appeals for a penalty were finally rewarded with five minutes left on the clock when the referee awarded a spot kick for a Simon Ford foul. Kevin Nicholls stepped up to convert the penalty, with Aidan Davison diving the wrong way, to give the Hatters a lifeline.

Town have conceded so many late goals in recent months, and the referee caused a few anxious moments by playing around five minutes of injury time, with the game (which had kicked off a few minutes late) finishing after 5pm.

A valuable win, a better overall performance than at Plymouth, and no more than Grimsby have deserved from their first three league games of the season.


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