Monday, March 1
Chester-le-Street, UK


‘Chester le Champs’

The Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup 


Chester-le-Street Town  v Ryton and Crawcrook Albion

It was show down at Noon at the OK Coral…

Like a North-Eastern Western 😳If you get me🤔

I could only hear the whistling tones from Ennio Morricone’s 1966 ‘The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly’ as we stepped into the baking hot sun, not a million miles from a New Mexican dry heat….

The History books awaited a new chapter to be written for The Cestrians as the Giant Killers of The Northern League….

would the Cestrians be regaling their grand children in the years to come or not🤔 as they took on Ryton and Crawcrook.

The nerves would be jangling today for both teams. La Stadio de Philleas Fogg was rammed to its max, with the Consett cauldron bubbling up with Cestrian Chants and Rytonian Roars!!

Anticipation and trepidation coursed through my veins ambivalently before the refs whistle blew….

The game started as expected, scrappy and tentative… very little was created to trouble the keepers at either end.

But then a breakaway from The Rytonian Striker as he sprinted down the right towards ‘Safe Hands’ Wilson as he walloped a bullet shot onto the bar!! 😳

What a wake up call for Wakey!!

23 minutes in and it was time for Reynoldo to deliver a perfectly timed cross from the left wing, floated majestically into the box, gravitating towards the frontal lobe of one HMS Clarkson steaming into the box.

HMS Clarkson was sandwiched between two towering defenders as he rose off the ground, the quality of the delivery only matched by the hover and the connection which was like a Pamplonan Bull smashing the matadorial sphere into the bottom corner of the Rytonian goal…

and Euphoria!!! 1-0 Come on!!!!

Cue HMS Clarkson doing what I remember myself doing back in ‘78…

Memories of the junior school yard in the peak of summer, small boys in the park, jumpers for goalposts… fists clenched like a raging madman doing  ‘an aeroplane’ 🤣

What a celebration😳!!

he virtually took off the ground!

My ears hurt with the cataclysmic boom of Cestrian celebration🙌🙌

At 1-0 the Final was far from decided…we needed a second goal to calm the Cestrian nerves…

Five minutes later The Meg, captain for the day, Kineticus Megasaurus rose like a Leviathan from the deep as he filled his boots full of leather and Ka-Boomed a shot just over the bar! 😫

We looked 10 feet tall…. We were confident…..We walking tall like Cestrian giants in the land of Lilliput, recently  twinned with Consett🤨

It was domination time, as The Royal Joshua levitated to connect with a terrific delivery from the left side to head a beauty just wide of the target…🤨 oooffff!!!

The Ref blew for the Oranges and sugary tea as HMS Chester Town was just getting the wind in its sails.

We expected a tsunami of Rytonian might, a blast wave of nuclear proportions, which is just what we got…

As the Rytonian hordes came at us we repelled them with all our strength, until ‘Brave as a Lyon’ could not resist anymore and took down the dangerous Rytonian Striker…

Who was the most nervous??  Keeper or Striker 🤔

Jack ‘The Cat’ Wilson  turned on the slow-mo…. he knew the cameras were there, MOTD had parked just next to his Lamborghini Aventador😌

As the ball left the striker’s boot, The Cat was away, off his toes and travelling fast..

Travelling towards to the incoming asteroidal object…

Poised, balanced and agile… all the things he knew he was, this was JW in the zone…

The Cat’s eyes never wavered, never blinked, he was one with the ball…

His gloved hands were like a black hole…. The Cat was like the Universe awaiting the inevitable…