Anyone for Tennis

Cod Almighty | Match Report

by Tony Butcher

12 April 2023

The apathy is high with Donny fans furious, and why there's so many of us is totally mysterious. Welcome to the TURTLE POWER! Stadium, but don't bring your brolly in. Why? Someone might take it off you and throw it on the pitch.

Sunshine and showers at the Lakeside Lido and Town lined up in blue in a 5-3-2 formation as follows: Crocombe, Emmanuel, Smith, Waterfall, Maher, Glennon, Morris, Green, Clifton, McAtee and Taylor. The substitutes were Efete, Hunt, Khouri, Gallacher, Khan, Lloyd and Orsi. Someday this bore's gonna end.

Someday this bore's gonna end, that'd be just fine with the boys in the coats. The bouncy boys in the band, well, that's a different story. It's a permanent party when Town are away. These are good times in our new state of mind, so leave your cares behind.

Doncaster. If they can't be bothered why should we?

1st half – Jam Up, Jelly Tight
Doncaster kicked off away from their emptiness and towards three thousand party animals. C'mon play the drum a little louder, listen to the band. Aren't they good, aren't they happy, though some old heads would prefer to be alone.

Why does it have to be so terribly loud?

Emmanuel dribbling, a corner coiling, Waterfalling after Mitchell's slap-flapping. Agard shuffle past the wayward Waterfall. Crocombe collapsed onto the rolling blunder. Slip-slack and whack as Clifton sliced. A hoopy break and Clifton slid back to Crocombe off Waterfall's derriere. Heels are there to be clipped.

We know their names, we don't have to look up their numbers. It's appalling.

Up, up and away like an unbeautiful balloon. I'm so dizzy, my head is spinning, like a whirlpool, it never ends. I've lost track of the vertical whacks and horizontal hacks as Town attacks hit a hooped wall.

Oh dear, one of their eyelashes has popped out. Tommy Rowe. Shut up you tart.

Waterfall walloped Agard, amid much crying in the chapel as Big Luke was booked for a Sunday lunch. Meat and two veg with a bucketful of gravy. After a half hour snooze Agard arose from his pose, was up on his toes and Town were comatose tha' knows.

Is it really necessary? Do you need to know? Oh all right, if you must. Triple Town sleeping at a chuck-in. A tickle, a tease, a swingle past Green and Barlow coiled into the toppermost top corner off the merest of Max fingers.

And the band played on. And on. And on.

Smith passed to hoops, hoops passed behind Smith. A lithe lad did the hippy-hippy-shake in the D past Emmanuel and crinkled agin the angle of post and bar. The ball bounced down to the offside Agard. That was close, indeed it was. That was Close. And so was this. Humming and drumming, moogling and googling, and Green removed Close from Mother Earth. There was a kind of hush all over world…and a corner followed.

Ah, close Mr Referee. But you're not right.

I’ll name that tune in three…

Is it Quando Quando Quando by Englebert Humperdinck? He's big with da kidz these dayz, isn't he? If not, why not?

Town. Oh dear. Town. Imagine a world of AI-controlled pigeons. The possibilities are endless, just like this game. Green crossed and Mitchell flipped over for a corner that was…taken. It was taken but we were not stirred.

A hoopy chip and barely a chase. Crocombe ambled and gambled, passing directly to Molyneux. With Mad Max in retreat from Moscow the local lad caressed a cheeky clop across the face of goal.

Five minutes were added and the referee decided to end it all as Maher prepared for a long chuck.

Town are getting worse by the minute, Donny are just staying the same. The battle for 14th has never been less alive.

2nd half – The boys to entertain you
Khan replaced Waterfall at half time and Town reverted to 4-4-2.

Heave-ho, off we go, up and away with an up and under. Clifton sandwiched and Faulkner fell, never to arise as he was wrapped in a shroud and wheeled off ten minutes later.

Rowe almost through. But he did not get through, did he. Oh no, he simply shinned against blue socks and Crocombe collected the rent.

What treasure do we see yonder? Tennis balls, my liege. Two tennis balls doth make a protest. At least they weren't umbrellas. Children can sleep safely now, though they'll get wet on their way home.

Morris. A shot charged down. This happened. I know it happened. I saw it with my own eyes. I distinctly remember it happening. It really did. Didn't it? Or am I hallucinating?

Who cares what's going on down on the pitch, this is our party and we'll cry when we want to.

Doncastrians dropping and flopping in a local variation of Crocramp. Molyneux theatrically collapsed clutching his face as Emmanuel prepared to cross. A drop ball dangled and Glennon bedraggled well wide.

Crocombe punted straight downfield, McAtee ran on past the failing full-back. Mitchell tittered out and tripped Clifton on the edge of the penalty area as Little Harry ran by. A yellow card and a Glennon tickle was tippled onto the top of the bar by the tips of Mitchell's fingers. Obviously a goal kick. Obviously.

Ah, they are still here then. James Brown didn't feel good, but we did, flashing over.

We never do anything, so now's the time to begin. Hurry up Harry, c'mon, c'mon or we're all going down the pub.

With five minutes left the epicly immobile Taylor and enervated ersatz soccer superstar McAtee disappeared, even though they were already invisible. And on came Lloyd and Orsi-Orsi. All that's past is prologue.

Movement! Verve and swerve and oh what nerve. Orsi-Orsi and Clifton combined and the ball trickled out for a corner. Elevation Mr Glennon. He elevated. In the ball dripped, Mitchell flipped and flapped backwards. Penalty box pandemonium, but only one set of shirts moving. Orsi headed, Lloyd nodded, Smith stooped and Maher poked in from an inch out.

And Donny awoke. For a while.

Swinging and dodging down their left and big booming beyond the farthest post. Brown laid back and Barlow wept as he swept over. Nutmegging infiltrations and Crocombe plumped aside. The corner crinkled and a hooped hand slapped to Max.

And they are no more, if they ever were anything, but less anyway.

Mitchell flapping, crosses zapping, all Town, all passing, all movement. Lloyd barged over in the box, Lloyd heading, Mitchell plucking.

Nine minutes were added.

All Town, all Town are we, it's Town, that's all. Orsi-Orsi swung his pants, Little Harry joined in with the bantz. Lloyd attacked the near post and Mitchell diverted the flick aside. For a goal kick.

Harrumphing, galumphing, we're incensed, Town were intense. Emmanuel wall passed with Lloyd. Hooped hacks. Possession, persistence, left and right. Smith channel chipped, Orsi bustled into the corner, turned on a proton and perfectly passed into Clifton's flightpath. A touch, a shot, a parry and Lloyd scampered across to smirkle into the emptied net.

We've been messing about, but we don't feel blue now.

No moaning, no problems, that's enough.

They were awful, we were appalling and then it was utterly magnificent for ten minutes. Everything was wrong until it was right, then it was very right indeed. It's just a shame that's all we got.

The Orsi-Clifton combo did it again. Hats off to Harry.