Main dogged by ill fortune

AT 4pm on Friday it seemed impossible to conceive of a game taking place at Purvis Park at the weekend.

But 24 hours later, Percy Main Amateurs players, fans and officials were left cursing the unexpectedly clement weather as the thaw had resulted in a game taking place.

It was a game that the Villagers had more than enough chances to win, but one they lost when Walker Central converted two of their three real efforts on target.

The best illustration of the ill fortune that continues to dog the home side can be seen by two corner kicks from the left hand side at either end of the game.

In the opening period, early Walker substitute Jake Mottram’s in-swinging effort eluded stand-in keeper Lindsay Collinson and flew in to the top corner.

The other, by the Main’s Chris Doig, hit the underside of the bar, eluded all attackers and bounced harmlessly away – it was that sort of day for the home team.

Collinson, who normally plays right back, was forced to don the gloves when Main found themselves without either regular custodians, Rob Rodgerson or Rob McGregor.

And he cannot be held culpable for this, or the other Walker goal, which came from the penalty spot after 70 minutes, when Dean Morgan’s challenge on James Walker was deemed to be illegal.

Walker picked himself up and scored for the team he shares a name with, condemning Main to their third successive defeat.

The only other effort Walker Central managed was a lusty volley from the edge of the box by returning former Main striker Nkuriza ‘Drogs’ Suabi, which was brilliantly tipped away by the agile, flying Collinson.

Indeed, Collinson’s only other meaningful touch was to stop Dean Morgan’s wildly sliced attempted clearance from diverting in to the home goal with barely 20 seconds on the clock.

Astonishingly this was seen as deliberate and a free kick was awarded, which Main defence adequately smuggled away.

The rest of the game saw a procession of missed chances by the home side and excellent saves by Walker keeper David Watts who, while not the captain of the team, frequently got his side out of a jam.

At the very start of the game, Watts was left a spectator as Ryan Laws hit a stunning 35-yard effort that smacked against the bar and away.

A Walker attack soon broke down and Main poured forward, with James Leggett ready to tap in at the back post, but Watts was spared the bitterest pill a keeper has to swallow when the home centre back was flagged offside.

Leggett again almost scored when Ryan Laws’s shot was blocked, Leggett skied the rebound.

Near the break, Chris Bell had an effort on goal, but despite Watts going to ground, he was unable to profit and put his effort wide.

The final effort of the half saw Dean Morgan shooting hard and low, but Watts got a precious touch on the ball to send it round the post.

In the second period, Ray Oshin stabbed an effort just past the post, before Dan Quine’s superb right wing corner eluded the luckless Leggett lurking at the back post.

Watts defied Chris Doig with his feet as the setting sun made his view of the shot a compromised one.

Bell’s marvellous turn and shot from the edge of the box was tipped away by Watts, who was providing that essential entertainment the crowd was delighted to see.

Finally, Doig’s corner hit the bar and went harmlessly away as Main realised the game was up; the team were beaten but had not surrendered.

On Saturday, Percy Main Amateurs make the trip to Northburn in Cramlington to play Shankhouse. Kick-off is 2pm.