Controversial Uppies win?
Last updated at 20:05, Thursday, 19 April 2012
A controversial move decided the 2012 Uppies and Downies mass football series in Workington on Saturday.
Uppies clinched the series title after a hard-fought three-hour battle on the green between Allerdale House and Tesco.
The no rules game looked like it was going the Downies way until a clever feint by a group of Uppies caused confusion.
To win, Downies have to hail the ball, made by Workington man Mark Rawlinson, at the dockside while Uppies have to hail it outside Workington Hall in Curwen Park.
It was a grudge match of epic proportions – Downies had won the Good Friday game and Uppies the game on Tuesday.
On top of that, the ball was a special diamond jubilee one, with patriotic piping, which every player was desperate to get their hands on.
It was thrown off by Jack Adams, 12, of Moorclose, on the Cloffocks, at 6.30pm.
The action moved quickly to the green, where it stayed for most of play, moving to Derwent Park, where Workington Comets were racing Glasgow Tigers.
Players moved dangerously close to cars parked near the ground, including a BMW and Mercedes.
The Mercedes alarm, thought to belong to an away fan at the speedway event taking place at the same time at nearby Derwent Park, was set off.
But controversy erupted when the ball suddenly disappeared just before 10pm.
Players started looking for it in back gardens.
But it was revealed on the Times & Star’s live website report during the game that a group of Uppies players, led by Joe and Paul Clarke and Richard Hodgson, had pulled off a risky dodge and were hiding in Jane Street with the ball until the crowds died down.
It caused a huge furore, with players from both sides saying there had been unfair tactics used in the no rules game, and that the ball should stay “in play” for the duration. Others praised the group for their cunning.
It was eventually hailed by Richard Hodgson, 21, of Lowca Lane, Seaton.
Richard, who has been playing the game since he was about 10, said: “At about 9.45pm my brother David put his hand up his top and I walked off with the ball right past all the Downies.
“I walked all the way. I went round the train station, round the alley at Taylor’s Joinery, through Vulcan Park, went right into Ashfield, through Stainburn School and into Curwen Park.
“I want to dedicate this ball in memory of Neil Muson and Shaun Friel.
“Neil was my father-in-law who died recently and Shaun is a relative of one of my friends.”
First published at 19:24, Thursday, 19 April 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
Have your say
I saw Mr Hodgson, who incidentally doesn't live in Seaton, unless that's a scam, on Saturday night and he didn't get involved in the scrum at all. I think it's unfair that he get to hail the ball without getting involved, I have also witnessed his "mates" bragging about the car that was used in the win.
I am an uppie before I get slaughtered for being a sore Downie looser!
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