Crap Match Report

Witham Town 0, Dulwich Hamlet 0

f

The Dulwich Hamlet stuttering spring period continued away at Witham Town on Saturday as the pink ‘n’ blue boys failed once again to find their early season rhythm with a 0-0 draw out in deepest Essex.

The point somehow leaves Dulwich still sitting fourth in the Ryman Premier with a place in the play-offs in their own hands. It also means that the Bank Holiday Monday evening match at home to fifth place Enfield Town is now all the more important.

DSC08003

The stalemate at the wonderfully named Village Glass Stadium suited Witham Town more. The North Essex side ended the day fourth bottom as they battle to stay in the Ryman Premier.

DSC08028

Attacks on goal for both sides in the first half were a rarity. Witham were kept out by a brilliant save from Dulwich ‘keeper Phil Wilson. Dulwich meanwhile had their one and only chance ruled out for offside.

DSC08114

The second half was scrappy, both on and off the pitch. It all got a little silly towards the end of the game when an over-zealous Witham steward didn’t like the noise that some members of the Dulwich Rabble were making.

It could have turned very nasty, but the blowing of the full time whistle seemed to calm down the situation.

DSC08054

Far more positive was Martyn Guest, the Witham goalkeeper. This man was an absolute star all afternoon. He played along with the Dulwich fans, even out witting them on many occasions. It was a brilliant gesture for the goalie to give his gloves to a young Hamlet fan once all the pushing and shoving had died down. Martyn was a credit to his club.

DSC08103

We spent most of the afternoon singing, drinking and snapping away. Below is the Brixton Buzz photo catch up from a Saturday afternoon away day jolly out in deepest Essex.

DSC08001

Welcome to Essex.

DSC08002

Despite the rather intimidating fortress like entrance, we did find Witham Town to be more or less a genuine community club. It was a bloody long walk from the train station, mind.

DSC08004

The entrance for players and officials required extreme security checks in order to access.

DSC08007

Ball watching.

DSC08008

Mr Tank and friends go through their touchline warm-up routines.

DSC08010

Some enthusiastic Dulwich fans offer the referee some assistance. He needed it for most of the match.

DSC08012

Drinking a cheapo pint and watching non-league football under overcast skies wasn’t the worst way of spending the Easter weekend.

DSC08013

The terracing behind the goal was incredibly relaxed. This fella took quite a shine to some of the Rabble songs. We clocked him having a crafty foot shuffle on more than one occasion. Nice moves, Sir.

DSC08016

The 3:33pm to London Liverpool Street offers travellers a blink and you’ll miss it opportunity to watch the game.

DSC08017

Player down.

DSC08018

A quick spray and a touch of the magic sponge, and all was well in the world once again.

DSC08019

A lino. Splendid vertical positioning.

DSC08022

The crowd of just under 200 can best be explained as being part of the busy Easter weekend. We think.

DSC08023

We confess to shooting out photographic load with Divot of the Day. This was a rather alcohol fuelled over-excitable early contender. It was later pointed out that it was more of a half decent skid mark.

DSC08024

The Joy of Essex.

DSC08025

Dulwich ‘keeper Phil Wilson preparing for a Witham corner.

DSC08026

Note the simply AMAZING media stand in the background. We shall come back to this…

DSC08027

Defending the all important near post. You read these Brixton Buzz reports for such cutting tactical analysis.

DSC08029

This chap made a lot of noise for one man. The Witham repertoire was a little limited, but fair play fella for your enthusiasm.

DSC08033

The Witham Family Stand. Possibly.

DSC08034

The Village Glass Stadium was actually a half decent ground for this level. Note the ‘opportunities’ that the corrugated stand can offer. Once again, we shall come back to these…

DSC08038

Flying the flag. No Emily Thornberry style comment from us. Nope.

DSC08039

In Pooch of the Day News: WOOF WOOF.

DSC08040

Who needs Premier League style Armani suits on a windswept North Essex touchline?

DSC08041

It was very Essex, though.

DSC08042

The Rabble swelled the Witham attendance figures.

DSC08043

Mr Tank and mate, again.

DSC08044

The bin was fairly average in terms of non-league street clutter. We still have absolutely no idea what the mysterious front door and small structure was all about.

DSC08045

Hands on hips. They coach this out of you at junior level.

DSC08046

More sideline action.

DSC08048

The pink pig of Dulwich. We were told post-match in the pub the historical significance of the pig. But we’re afraid that the explanation got rather lost as the fourth pint of the excellent No Name beer was sunk.

DSC08049

Witham come close in the first half. This is a sentence that we could only really use once to be honest.

DSC08055

Harry Ottaway toiled, toiled and toiled again for Dulwich.

DSC08058

The view from behind the rather overcast goal.

DSC08059

And here’s that man Martyn once again.

DSC08060

It was one of those Dulwich away day afternoons where we weren’t really sure if it was a half empty or half full occasion.

DSC08061

Mid to high spirits from The Rabble.

DSC08064

The pink pig gets some attention.

DSC08066

Martyn gets a little muddy.

DSC08067

You won’t see this kind of picture in a Chelsea match report.

DSC08068

Lovers of turnstile architecture would have been fascinated by this structure. Sadly it wasn’t operational. It wasn’t even positioned by a ground entrance. Which was rather odd.

DSC08069

Ooooh. Corrugated stands.

DSC08070

MC Witham, in the area.

DSC08071

Half time rituals.

DSC08072

Finally. In Divot of the Day News: Gawblimey. Wot a WHOPPER.

DSC08074

The action on the pitch wasn’t always riveting.

DSC08075

Here’s that Witham chap once again singing his happy heart out. Well played.

DSC08077

Chin chin.

DSC08078

Dulwich defending a free kick on the edge of the area. Note ‘keeper Phil Wilson’s Phantom of the Opera mask once again. We rather like this.

DSC08079

In-depth Rabble conversation and smiles.

DSC08080

With 0-0 looking likely, manager Gavin Rose made some late substitutions to try and liven things up for the Hamlet. We’ve no idea about what is going off with the collapsing stand in the background.

DSC08083

Yer man Gav cut something of a lone figure for most of the second half.

DSC08085

BIG Essex skies.

DSC08086

Martyn wasn’t really troubled. At least not on the pitch, anyway.

DSC08089

Here we go – the Witham Media Stand. We’d love to see John Motson being winched up there. We personally wouldn’t go anywhere near it. We can’t see what role the roof actually does.

DSC08091

Harry Ottaway picks up a yellow card. We’re not sure what for, and neither was Mr O.

DSC08092

The ref checks his spelling of Ottaway.

DSC08093

Not long left now…

DSC08095

Hands on hips again.

DSC08097

Ah – the Witham steward. We’re not going to make this personal. Honest. But right from the kick off the man in the yellow bib was on a mission to try and make the Rabble’s day out in Essex an unpleasant experience. Gawd knows what would have happened if the smoke bombs had been brought in…

DSC08098

OVER THERE.

DSC08099

A late corner for the pink ‘n’ blue boys.

DSC08102

Mr Steward seemingly enjoying the game. As were The Rabble.

DSC08104

And then WOH. What happened here? The corrugated stand was given a very gentle tap in tune with the latest Dulwich ditties. Mr Steward flipped, pints were thrown to the floor and a Dulwich fan was singled out and physically told to leave. There was one minute of the game remaining…

DSC08105

More OVER THERE action.

DSC08106

The Dulwich fan stood his ground as the ref was about to blow for full time. A second steward became involved. He appeared to have slightly better man / woman management skills.

DSC08107

The Rabble try and play down the incident.

DSC08108

The first steward is having none of it. He gave the impression that he was up for a ruck.

DSC08109

It then got very silly.

DSC08110

The first steward was ordered away by his pal. He then symbolically took off his yellow bib, and came back for more.

DSC08111

More people become involved.

DSC08116

Oh come on ref – just blow your whistle and none of this nonsense needs to take place.

DSC08117

Oh dear.

DSC08118

Full time. And thank the chuffers for that.

DSC08123

Warming down.

DSC08121

Handshakes.

Essex, over and out.