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Saturday 25th April 2015 ko 15.20

Notts Senior League- Senior Division

BURTON JOYCE 3 (Buckle 5 Ryan Easom 67 Smith 82) Clements missed penalty 4 Roscoe Easom sent off 85 (DOGSO)

ATTENBOROUGH 3 (Nice 9 Elliker 30 61)

Att 279

Entry £3

Programme £1

Was I the only one who thought the hop needed a boost when we parked up at the Poplars? Certainly one goal in two games wasn’t what four clubs, the league and one organiser would have wanted, but even if the game here hadn’t had served up a 6-goal thriller, the boost Burton Joyce gave the event was based on far more than just football.

It does help when the gate is staffed by young smiling ladies, and yes I do feel incredibly middle-aged typing that, but as I sat in the pavilion jotting down the line-ups fortified by a cheese and onion cob (Roll if you’re not from these parts) and a tea I watched and listened.

Even when a sharp shower sent the arriving coach party scurrying inside, good timing that, there was a collective smile on from the club, and a sense of unconscious competence. I tend to describe that combination as charm, and I’ve seen it at such places as Llanboidy and Benson Lions and this was another example of it, and as far removed from what we’d experienced a mile or two down the road at Netherfield as is possible.

The pitch is a good 200 yards from the pavilion so having the barbecue with sight of the pitch was an inspired move too. If we all felt lifted before kick-off than the game well and truly put the smiles back on our faces. Joyce featured the 3 Easom brothers whose surname many had misspelled last year when they’d played for Joyce at Cotgrave. And like then, they were to the fore as they helped Joyce pull back at 2 goal deficit, despite goalkeeper Roscoe’s late dismissal for wiping out a clean-through Alex Elliker.

There was incident, skill and controversy, or to put it more succinctly a darned good game of football, and If I had been organiser Rob Hornby I’d have felt I’d regained the situation. The measure of the club’s success was hearing the jokes being told as we walked back to the car park, I hadn’t noticed the absence of it previously.