Gainsborough Trinity 1 - 1 Bamber Bridge
Well, If nothing else, Saturday’s trip to Lincolnshire to Face Gainsborough Trinity was certainly eventful. The team coach broke down just 10 minutes after leaving Bamber Bridge and limped along the M65 to Darwen Services. A sheared flywheel and a leaking cooling system meant the end of the journey, for that bus at least. An hour later, a replacement arrived and we were off, only to be delayed on the M62 for a further 15 minutes due to an accident. We finally arrived at the Martin and Co. Arena at twenty past three, The referee indicating kick off would be at 4pm.
The early stages of the game saw Brig, in all yellow, start the game well with some slick passing football. An early raid down the right wing found new loan signing from Crewe Alexandra, Zack Kempster-Down in space, he drilled over a hard low cross which was well gathered by the home keeper, diving low to his near post. The Holy Blues responded and a fine run through the middle saw the ball switched left, a firm shot from the edge of the box was well blocked and cleared. Back came Bamber Bridge and again down the right, this time Zak watched his deep cross from wide right float just over the crossbar. Seconds later and Danny Forbes tried an audacious chip over the keeper who was alert to the danger and saved well.
The Lancashire side were getting into their stride and Danny Edwards was found on the left of the penalty area with a fine lofted pass, he controlled the ball before striking a volley that was deflected out of play for a corner. Trinity then turned defence into attack as they raced forward, a sharp pass to the right was met with a fierce low drive, James Pradic in the Brig goal spreading himself well to save well with his legs.
With the play now moving from end to end, Danny Forbes was unlucky with a great flicked header from a left wing cross that was deflected over the bar. From the resulting corner, Pottsy struck a low shot that was well saved by the home keeper. The last action of the half ended following a spell of head tennis in the Trinity penalty area before it was eventually hooked clear.
The second half started in a blaze from The Briggers. Danny Forbes whipped in a low cross from the right, the attempted volleyed clearance from the home defender took the ball in the opposite direction, but fortunately for the hosts straight into the arms of the keeper.
But just 4 minutes into the 2nd half Brig went ahead. A cross from the left was partially cleared, falling to Harry Scarborough on the edge of the “D”, The Brig striker steadied himself before slamming a great volley into the roof of the net. At the other end a low shot from the home side flashed into the side netting following a break down the left.
Brig attacked again and Danny Forbes was tripped just outside the area in a central position. Adam Dodd stepped up but his low drive rebounded back to him off the defensive wall, his follow up shot cleared the bar, the terracing and flew out of the ground.
Gainsborough Trinity then began to enjoy a spell of pressure forcing Brig into defensive mode, James Pradic pulled off a fine save moments before the equaliser came on 70 minutes. Brig failed to clear a ball into the box and the resulting shot seemed to take a deflection before finding the back of the net.
Brig made two changes, on came Tunde and Marc Cullen to replace Danny Forbes and Danny Edwards. Tunde was quickly into the action as burst free down the left, cutting back along the byline, his low cross deflected out for a corner. The short corner led to Sky Sinclair whipping over a superb cross, a home defender got a touch with his head to the ball but it flashed just inches wide of the far post.
Another Brig cross from the left was then headed over by a defender as Brig looked for the winner. The hosts were still looking very dangerous but Brig were playing well and a Pottsy free kick some 40 yards from goal was just missed by Marc Cullen as he stretched to get on the end of it, the ball just skipping out of play.
Zack Kempster-Down then broke free down the left before striking a low shot that was well gathered by the keeper. Zak again moments later with another great run played the ball square across the box from the byline the incoming shot was well blocked and cleared.
That was to be the last action of an entertaining game played in a good spirit and Bamber Bridge were well worthy of at least the point they take back to Lancashire. Brig have had two extremely long and arduous journeys this week following Tuesday nights visit to the North East and Marske Utd. Just the one point to show for the two games but both performances were good and the team is beginning to gel. It’s a long hard season but we are certainly on the right lines. The games come thick and fast in the NPL and Bank Holiday Monday sees us back at Irongate were Workington FC will be visitors. See you all there.