Sunday, 27 November 2016


26 NOVEMBER 2016 --- 3PM
Two sweet strikes from Selby number 9 Jason Crisp were just enough to secure the three points against form team and the team sitting in second spot Grimsby Borough.  The first half lead was secured by Crisp and in the second half a winning strike form a 35 yard free kick proved enough for the North Yorkshire side to gain victory in an entertaining encounter.
The blog elected for a shorter journey this week and with fog threatening many parts of the country the option to visit Selby, town and ground, for the first time was taken up.
As ever dear reader the rail network provided a talking point throughout this day with the start from base station finding overrunning engineering works seeing us take the short trip to Sheffield on a delayed train, standing of course.  We opted for an all stopping train to Leeds and securing a seat from our platform 3 departure we had a good start mind you by the time the 2 carriage Northern Rail train arrived in Leeds it was as usual rammed the full length of the train.  Here the fun started we hopped onto the 1150 on the adjacent platform for the stopping train to Selby only to jump off a few moments later when a points failure appeared to make the train redundant.  The staff could give no further information when this would be fixed but National Rails website was advising 2.45pm, great!  Plans were in place on the platform for alternatives when the guard declared 'get on were off'.  Well we were precisely 200 yards towards the end of the platform but now situated on the central track and grinding to a halt.  The thought process was they had got us off the platform and here we would sit, there was now a regret of not making the change of plans while on the platform as now we could not get off!
Thankfully after a further wait the driver announced 'were going' and off we went by this stage we had taken to a standing position and entered into a fantastic conversation with Barbara from Selby and Michael from Todmorden who had just been on a break to Tenerife.  Barbara sold us on Selby and for a lass from Doncaster she was proud of her new town and the Abbey which she advised us to visit upon departure.  Our stress levels reduced massively and this was once again one of the joys of travelling when you meet people like this genuine people who love to have a chat and we passed the hour away, normally journey time about 35 minutes, with ease so much so that very little of the passing landscape was admired.
We were in Selby before we knew it thanks guys and of course to our train crew who were great, fellow traveller Mick undertook some suitcase duties for Barbara, I managed to avoid this but for the last stretch over the rail bridge I succumbed and helped with a carrier bag, gentleman to the end!
Time to depart and our fellow travellers were off for a rest after their travels back home and we were in Selby Abbey within a few strides.
  A fantastic place of worship that stands proud from the main shopping area and internally this building is as impressive as any I have visited, if you get the chance pop along and have some time in Selby.  As we turned off the main shopping area to Mickletgate we located Mr C's todays fish and chip establishment to be sampled purely for research purposes of course!  The business has won many awards and has a pleasant building were you can recline to eat or you may sample the excellent corporate logo boxes for a take away, but don't try and read them while your foods inside.  The premises are smart, clean and modern with a descriptor telling you were todays fish is from trawler wise and who farmed todays potatoes.
I went for fish and chips and they were of a good standard looking like they had been cooked in 'real' fat and within a small walk around the square they were all gone!  Some people have suggested the blog does a fish and chip league and I have to say it is getting closer, the only problem is I will have to re visit all the fish and chip shops covered so far!!
A short walk away is Richard St the entrance road to the Fairfax Plant Hire Stadium home of Selby Town FC nestled in between Selby Auto Spares, Selby Leisure Centre and Selby Community School once inside though this is a cavernous ground.
The old descriptor comes out because this is the stereotypical ground of 'character' lots of interest with lots of works in progress.  To the right as we enter is a stepped terracing and towards the corner a small toilet block.  Behind this near goal is the main stand at Richard St which starts a little way in after the corner flag with deep wooden bench seating all built in as a block at the far end of the stand is a small sectioned off area with tip up seats placed within, as we come to the next side terracing re appears.
The far touchline has plenty of ground behind it, the first area years ago appears to have been the site for a stand no longer in situ we then arrive at the changing room block and dug outs before passing through to the flat standing the other side which to the rear sees the ground covered in Astroturf recovered from some long lost playing ground.  Behind the far goal is a solitary and lonely looking Atcost terrace stand and then we are back to the main business end.
Here we have a media and club shop cabin, again here it is great to hear a public address system operated really well and audible around the ground.  Its operated by our man from Sheffield which is non more so noticeable than when before the game starts he welcomes all to 'beautiful down town Fairfax Plant Hire Stadium' in reference to Bramall Lane.  A lofted hospitality area sides onto the cosy clubhouse which features a bar and snack bar area which is well operated by the ladies of Selby today.  To the front of this area is a bench seated facility which commands a nice view of proceedings.
Today was developing into a foggy and miserable day but I quite like the ground it has character and is not bland and although with some more volunteers I guess Selby could develop it nicely.  One area of note was that the pitch in front of the stand was under water early in the week and the ground here must be the only one in the country to have its own mini moat/stream around it.
For those blog readers who like the game information here it is and with apologies for pictures my camera did not like the dark foggy day, sorry.
Scott Jones for Selby was first to test the Grimsby goal with his shot just over the bar before Crisp saw his effort saved and then Gary Lumley with the follow up found Scott Drury its equal in the visitors goal.  On the half hour mark Borough got in a couple of efforts Dan Trott saw his shot blocked and Adam Drury just missed giving Grimsby the lead.  A few minutes later Drury was through on goal but with just Peter Laurie to beat in the home goal he fired wide.
Selby took the lead on 39 minutes a superb ball up the right hand side from Craig Maynard set Crisp away he was fouled around the edge, or just inside the box, and with the linesman flagging for the infringement he recovered his composure to lash the ball home.
The lead didn't last long just 1 minute with Paul Ashton and Caine Winfarrah involved the ball finally fell for Dan Trott who took the chance to level the scores.  With the mist descending we entered into the snack bar area with thoughts of second half problems but upon emerging 10 minutes later conditions had improved.
The second half saw a determined Selby sensing victory against Borough and on 65 minutes they secured the lead that was to be unsurmountable and it was a second for Crisp 35 yards out wide on the right the home side were awarded a free kick and the ball flew off the number 9's boot high into the roof of the net.
Who would tire now?  Selby looked up to defending this and maybe increase their lead but they were grateful to Gary Lumley when he cleared Adam Drury's effort off the line and then with 10 minutes remaining Jack Debnam saw his 25 yard effort clip the Selby bar.
The final stages of the game seemed to enter a slow farcical stage with referee Munday taking an age for two cautions around 88 minutes after 2 consultation with his linesman.  So many of the chats and cards seemed laboured but as ever referees have to be seen to be active when they have an assessor present.  Home keeper Laurie secured the points with a super save on 90 minutes when he went full stretch and his legs blocked Jack Bradbury's effort.  Then when we thought we were moving nicely to the final whistle we had a stoppage for net repair to the Selby goal!  With the whistle going just before 4.55 we thought our chances of a departure on the 5.10 were nil.  Having taken the shortcut towards the Abbey we went for it arriving back just after 5 past 5 and with the train announced we had done it or had we?  You've guessed it the train was stuck outside the station and would finally arrive just after 5.25, hilarious we could have ambled back instead.
With Leeds arrived at just behind schedule there was still time for a comfort stop and a vegetable pasty, pasty league anyone [?], from the lovely stand at Leeds Station before departing on a late train back to base station arriving just before 7.30.
An eventful day and maybe we need to give the trains a few weeks off now as for Selby well worth the visit a nice little town with a ground of character.  The game was agricultural but you could not doubt the effort and I found it a highly entertaining encounter with lots of chances to keep the neutral happy.

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