Saturday 12th October 2019
Northern Premier League Premier Division
Grantham Town: Andrew, Byrne, Bartle, Atkinson, T Ward, Racchi, Berrett, C Ward, Westcarr, Campbell, A Smith. Subs: Broadhead, Baxendale, G Smith, McGovern, Wright.
Hyde United: Luke Mewitt, Oran Thompson, Kyle Brownhill, Liam Tongue, Luis Morrison, Jordan Fagbola, Tom Pratt (Jack Dyche), Cain Noble, John McCombe, Daniel Turner (Jamal Crawford), Paddy Lane. Subs not used: Harry Benns, Thierry Lewis, Aidan Winterbottom.
The tigers produced a gutsy and battling performance to earn a well-deserved point after a 2-2 away to Grantham Town. The pitch wasn’t conducive to play any sort of football on so Hyde knew they were going to be in for a physical encounter.
Hyde struggled to get into the Grantham half in the opening 10 minutes, having to deal with a barrage of long throws and testing crosses into the box. The tigers defended them well and saw them out, looking to gain a foothold in the game. But, they fell behind on 15 minutes when Brownhill was judged to have handballed outside the area, the Hyde players incensed as it appeared to be off a Grantham hand. Westcarr stepped up with a brilliant free kick that found the bottom corner.
It would have been easy to say that the tigers could have crumbled once behind, with Grantham continuing to ask questions of the Hyde backline. However, Hyde were unlucky to not be level at the break as they had ample opportunities themselves, the best being from much improved corners and a Tongue free kick that was just wide of the post.
The message at half time will have been to keep going. A key part of Hyde’s comeback into the game was the hard work of the forward line, Lane producing his best performance of the season, Turner arguably being tigers man of the match and McCombe, whose selection at number 9 will have raised eyebrows before the game, working hard to hold up the ball and bring others in to play, which the hosts struggled to keep up with.
Hyde were level when Morrison scored his first goal for the club, tapping home a cross from a yard. This sparked an eventful few minutes, with protests from the home dugout seeing 2 members of the bench being rightly sent off by the referee. This gave the tigers the opportunity to unsettle Grantham and were in front when Lane scored from the spot after a Ward handball.
The hosts managed to grab a share of the points late on when Westcarr poked home a shot inside the box after a goalmouth scramble.
By George Rothwell