Sunday, 24 February 2013

Solihull Moors 1 Boston United 0

Tweet from me at about 9am on Saturday morning: “@adamjshergold: hoping @bostonunited can deliver three points on a ground where we always seem to lose 1-0.”

Text to my friend Mark at 11.40am: “Just hope we get something instead of losing 1-0 as always happens at Solihull!” 

Tweet from me at 5pm: “FT: Solihull 1 Boston 0 - Gone exactly as predicted. We’ve had six good chances and not taken one #bufc” 

I didn’t have to be the next Russell Grant to foresee our 1-0 defeat at Solihull Moors on Saturday, it was a result as predictable as night following day. 

As in the last two seasons, we came to this Brummie suburb, watched the planes rattling overhead from the nearby airport, saw Boston take the game to their opponents and create six or seven very scorable opportunities... and then succumb to a single goal. 

To be fair to Solihull, they did create a number of good chances themselves but I feel a point would have been the fairest result. But football is seldom fair and as I set out for the trek back to Solihull station on this bitingly cold teatime, I couldn’t help but smile at the inevitability of the afternoon’s events. 

Having done the walk plenty of times before, I wasn’t going to bother with this fixture but, through what I’m guessing was some malfunction on the National Rail website, I got a £9 return train ticket and thought it would be rude not to. 

I’d also had an excellent week, going to Istanbul on a press trip to watch the Euroleague basketball match between Fenerbahce and Barcelona. Sleepy suburban Solihull was certainly a comedown from the pan-continental Turkish city, which is like London on heat. 

Despite playing well, I can’t help but have a few complaints about the way Boston set about their task. The unexpected departure of Gareth Jellyman during the week left us shorn of a familiar face and meant more changes in the back line. 

I feel we should be playing with the same regular back-line where possible and was dismayed to see Tom Ward sitting on the bench. His partnership with Nathan Stainsfield earlier in the season was often rock solid and I still feel it should be our first choice, even though Paul Lister looks a decent stand-in. 

Up front too, it baffles me why we persist with lumping forward long balls to Spencer Weir-Daley. He did well against the much taller and stronger Solihull centre-back and, one in every three or four, he’ll be able to hold up the ball and find a teammate. But the defender consistently got the ball off him as SWD tired in the second half. The only attacking player who won any headers was Jordan Smith when he came on with 20 minutes to play - and he's not a striker. 

We no longer have any width either. When we were doing well in this league, we often thrived because of the fast wing attack and deliveries of Ryan Semple and Jamie Yates. Since their departure, we haven’t even tried to find replacements. The result is a resort to Route One from the outset - when it is well proven that we do better with the ball on the ground - and the sight of Weir-Daley and his trike partners growing more and more frustrated as the defender wins the ball over and over again. 

Another frustration of going to Solihull is their really good goalkeeper, Jas Singh, and he again showed his class by saving from SWD in the first half, while the same player got through and then uncharacteristically dragged the ball wide. Marc Newsham, who looked his usual dangerous self, clipped the crossbar too. 

Dan Haystead was busy too at the opposite end, but the keeper could do little about Mayo’s unfortunate own goal which settled the game on the stroke of half-time. It was a shot from the brilliantly-named Omar Bogle which caused consternation and Mayo deflected it in without knowing much about it. 

It somehow summed up the bad fortune we always have here.

United came out strongly after the interval, with Ian Ross starting to have an effect. Anton Foster sent a glorious volley on goal which was destined for the bottom corner until Singh miraculously clambered across and saved it. 

Newsham also had the ball in the back of the net from five yards out, but was flagged offside. I don’t think it was actually offside. Singh then produced an even better save from a Newsham header and then jumped Swansea ballboy-like on Mayo’s follow-up. 

And so our curse continues at Solihull...

Next Match: Working next weekend so hoping to make up for that with a midweek local game. 

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Sutton United 2 Welling United 1

I’m lucky enough to live within walking distance of my place of work and so the concept of the nightmare Capital commute is alien to me. But in order to gain an authentic experience of London living, it doesn’t heard to go and join it once in a while.

I always have a purpose to doing this of course and on Tuesday night, while everyone else on the train was desperate to simply get home, I was eager to reach Gander Green Lane and Sutton United. Obviously. 

And, my goodness, what a nightmare it is. I now see what everyone moans on about and sympathise with why the word ‘commute’ has become such a dirty word. 

There’s the Tube bit first of all, when a man of my height (6’5”) has no hope of avoiding a bad back and long-term neck damage unless he can strong-arm his way into the very centre of the carriage, whereupon he is inevitably squeezed with his forehead touching the filthy, germ-ridden overhead grab bars between two very expressive Italian tourists and their fold-out maps trying to locate Elephant and Castle. 

Then there’s the train leg. Good old British Rail. First, the station was half-terminus, half-building site. Crossrail will be fantastic when it arrives but you can’t help think all those promotional signs boasting that there will be 6,580 trains an hour when it’s done are a bit lost on regular commuters forced to side-step their way down a narrow half-closed platform with the piercing drone of a pneumatic drill ringing in their ears. 

Then, in my carriage, which was inevitably standing room only, there was the mandatory bike w**ker, headphones w**ker and luggage w**ker. Luggage w**ker I can cope with - they’ve obviously just come in from a flight or a cross-country train trip and have their bags with them, they’re exhausted and want to get home - fine.    

But there’s no excuse for headphone w**ker and bike w**ker. Headphone bloke with his rap music so loud that the whole carriage and even the train behind can hear every lyric and bike man who decides to carry a full-sized mountain bike into an already claustrophobic carriage at the busiest time of the day. 

Then there was the obligatory delay - not too bad from my point of view - after the inevitable signal failure and chorus of tutting from all the passengers. People of the commute, I sympathise with you. 

Thankfully, the rest of the evening was very pleasant despite being piss-steamingly cold. I’d heard that Sutton’s ground had a running track around it and therefore I’d be a million miles away from the action. Thankfully, I’d heard wrong. It used to have something around it (greyhound racing?) but the stands have been moved in and I had a great view from one of the corner terraces. 

I didn’t think much of the burger, particularly in these Shergar meat days, but the chips were nice and everyone was very friendly, including the programme seller who kindly informed me that they couldn’t afford to fully reprint the issue from the postponed game over Christmas and so had brought it up to date with a four-page insert. As if I was going to kick off and storm out because there wasn’t enough to read...

I didn’t hold out much hope for Sutton, who went into the game 20th out of 22 in the Conference South, and were up against Welling, who were second and looking good for promotion. Presumably, neither did the hundred or so travelling fans from the opposite side of south London, nor many of the home fans who had braved the chill evening.

But if the proverbial alien had, for some reason, chosen Sutton as the starting point for its life on Earth, it would not have been able to tell which side was flying high and which was staring at the Ryman League. Like at Bromley against Basingstoke on Saturday (see below), there is very little between, essentially, the bottom 15 teams of this ridiculously tight division. 

Sutton tore into their opponents from the very start. They were faster to every ball, good on the counter-attack and sharp in every tackle. They created 90 per cent of the chances in the first half and their rotund goalkeeper Wayne Shaw, who received terrace taunts such as “can you point out where your neck is?”, was rarely bothered.

They didn’t score, however, despite Jamie Stuart heading against the post when unmarked at a corner kick and a penalty save from goalkeeper San Motts against Sam Rents in stoppage time. 

I feared for Sutton at the break - surely Welling would turn up for the second half and nick a goal at some point. I had no cause to worry. They were just as energetic after the break and Craig Dundas opened the scoring with his 50th goal for the club, tucking away the ball following a good ball from the right. 

Moments later, Sutton doubled their advantage thanks to the excellent Harry Ottaway, who rounded off a flowing move which cut open the Welling defence. 

As the home side sat back, there were a couple of scares before the three points were assured. First, Ross Lafayette outsprinted the defence, easily rounded the flailing attempt of Shaw to stop him, but, with the goal open, blazed it high over the crossbar into the away fans. 

He would pull one back in the 88th minute after being set up by Jon Main but, despite a barrage of late pressure, they were unable to gain a point to keep them in touch with leaders Salisbury. 

Next Match: Working over the FA Cup fifth round this weekend, so hoping to get to another match next week. If not, it will be Boston’s trip to Solihull Moors the following Saturday.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Bromley 1 Basingstoke Town 2

I decided against following Boston United up to Guiseley. It’s a nice little place but when you’ve been there about 6,000 times in the last five years - that’s genuinely how it feels - and there’s little to no chance of a result, you tend to see sense. 

As usual, there was plenty happening within the M25 but now that I’ve done all the Premier League and Football League grounds within the Capital, you need to travel a little further afield and delve a little further down to find a new place to visit. 

Hence, to the (Conference) South and the leafy suburban sprawl of a drizzly Bromley. It couldn’t have been much easier - circle line from Bayswater to Victoria, rail to Bromley South in 25 minutes and then, after turning away from the hustle-bustle of the High Street, a 20-minute stroll past well-kept, well-expensive houses to the Hayes Road ground. 

It had a few echoes of the seventies sitcom, “The Good Life” about it. Quintessential English suburbia melting away slowly into quagmire allotments, leafy copses, horses in wooden stables and, stretching away in the distance, the never-ending Garden of England. 

Behind the large expanse of open terrace on which I stood was a cricket pitch, just yearning for the heavy grey skies to clear off and the summer to return. A church spire poked out above the bare trees on the opposite end of Bromley Common in the near distance and it couldn’t have felt more unlike London. 

A nice setting, then, but what about the action. Well, despite what the Conference South table might suggest at a first glance, there was a lot resting on the game. The programme told me that just four points currently separate 10th from 21st (second bottom) in what is a ridiculously tight division. Within this mash-up, Bromley were 12th and Basingstoke, well below their usual play-off chasing form, were 20th. 

As one of the chaps stood near me identified, a win for Bromley would have taken them into the top six, while a defeat could have theoretically left them in the bottom three!

The pitch looked dreadful - it has clearly taken some hammer over the winter and there were large patches which were simply sand. The poor groundsman spent the entire duration of the players’ warm-ups replacing divots with his fork. 

It didn’t seem to bother Basingstoke, who had the lead before Bromley had touched the ball. On four minutes, Shaun McAuley used a burst of pace to get down the right and then fired the ball across goal. Bromley defenders tried in vain to get a telling touch to stop it, but it came right through to Simon Dunn, who finished well. 

The knot of 20-or-so Basingstoke (or “Bay-stoke” as they necessarily have to abbreviate it during chants) fans celebrated on the slippery terrace steps. 

It took ages for Bromley to muster a shot or generally do anything of note and those around me talked in a seen-it-all-before manner every time a forward assault broke down. 

There was a horrible moment shortly before half-time, when Basingstoke’s Ross Adams went down with a whelp of pain when blocking a shot from Bromley’s Ian Daly. You could hear the crack of ankle bone from fifty yards away, a sound you always hate to hear. His teammates held head in hand at the sight of their crumpled comrade and it took nearly ten minutes for the St John’s Ambulance folk to stretcher the poor guy off. You can only hope he makes a speedy recovery.

It didn’t affect Basingstoke one bit and, in the seventh and final minute of stoppage time, they took an even greater stranglehold on the match. Manny Williams slipped in Dunn again and the frontman made no mistake to continue his fine first-half performance. 

It was ten past four before we resumed and the second period continued in much the same way. Bromley pepped up a little but it was mainly Basingstoke who carried the greater threat on the break, in defiance of their respective league placings. 

Delano Sam-Yorke wasn’t afraid to have a run at the home defence, who would nearly always backtrack, and he missed a couple of good chances to extend the lead - the first a header just wide and then a run which required goalkeeper Joe Welch to dive bravely at his toes. 

Sam-Yorke might have won a penalty too, but his admittedly elaborate fall was adjudged to be just outside the box. The gloriously named Jordace Holder-Spooner - who I can only presume goes by the name “Spoony” - fired the subsequent free-kick over. 

With 20 minutes left, Bromley at last started to rally. They were helped by the official, who correctly spotted Jay Gasson’s hand ball and Danny Waldren fired straight and true down the middle to restore interest in the game. 

Encouraged by an awakening crowd, Bromley poured forward in search of an equaliser. It should have arrived when Elliot Buchanan crossed from the right and Max Noble, with a tap-in at the far post, contrived to slip in the mud and put the ball wide. One for the bloopers reel, if anyone was actually taping the match...

Noble dusted himself down and struck the post with a curling shot moments later, while up the other end, Welch blocked a shot from McAuley with his right leg as Basingstoke came a fraction away from making absolutely sure. 

The away defence, who has been remarkably vocal all afternoon with leadership-seminar style quotes like “WE CAN HOLD ON IF WE BELIEVE IN OURSELVES AND EACH OTHER”, clung on for a crucial three points that further shook up this ridiculously close league. 

Next Match: Working over the FA Cup fifth round next weekend but should get a match in this week...  

England 2 Brazil 1

Pele, Garrincha, Robbie Carlos, fat Ronaldo, Rubens Barrichello, Ayrton Senna, Oscar Niemeyer, Princess Isabel, Carmen Miranda, Jorge Amado, Taio Cruz, those kidnappers from that Simpsons episode... you boys took one hell of a beating! 

No need to get carried away, but this must have been one of the best England performances in many years. Being just a friendly, it wasn’t an “I was there” result, but it was one of those satisfying moments where you can say in a few years’ time that you had the privilege of seeing England beat the five-time champions of the world. 

England played with the stabilisers off - they were bold, purposeful, brave and possessing enough quality about them to take on Brazil at their own game. There was certainly the quota of heart-in-mouth moments you always expect against such high-calibre opposition but, weighing it all up afterwards, England did the nation very proud indeed.

The greatest compliment that could be paid to the England team was that, for pretty much the entire occasion, the many, many Brazilian fans dotted around Wembley were silenced. These permanent party people, with all their uninhibited spirit and lust for life, weren’t at all impressed with what they were witnessing - the Samba beat was completely silenced. 

And in the final ten minutes, as the expected Brazilian onslaught threatened and then never came, it was the trumpeters of the Pukka Pies Band, round to my right, that were setting the rhythm of the evening and not, as I had predicted, the bongos, whistles and tambourines of the green and gold visitors.

There were a number of outstanding performances throughout the home side - plenty to cling on to as we enter an intriguing 150th anniversary year of mouth-watering “Home International” friendlies, and the decisive qualifiers to see if we can hear more of that intoxicating Carnival rhythm next summer.

Jack Wilshere, making his first start under Roy Hodgson, was exceptional in a quiet, unfussy way. He was deservedly man of the match and it was correct that the accolade went to the Arsenal man rather than one of the goalscorers as it normally does. 

He worked without fatigue nipping at Brazilian heels and interpreting their clever movement. His endeavour made a mockery of the “friendly” tag.  In the main, he left the attacking duties to his accomplice Steven Gerrard, it wasn’t his place to maraud forward too much, but he single-handedly made sure Brazil couldn’t do likewise. 

Further up, Theo Walcott also caught the eye. Stationed on the right, rather than in the swashbuckling central striker role that he’s found to his taste for Arsenal this season, but only too happy to give the Brazilians a taste of their own medicine. 

Particularly after the break, he made mincemeat of Adriano, twisting and turning the left-back, getting beyond him and then crossing from the byline. When he was replaced by Filipe with 20 minutes to play, it was something of a mercy. 

Gary Cahill was also brilliant, in my eyes, although he was panned in the press for failing to offload the ball and allowing Fred to equalise a minute into the second-half. This ten seconds of madness should not, in my opinion, detract from a composed performance that made the much-vaunted Neymar look like an amateur. I’d even venture so far to say that Neymar was in Cahill’s pocket. 

England’s goal were the icing on the cake. Wayne Rooney is in one of his “I’m completely unplayable” purple patches and when the ball broke to him on the edge of the box after Julio Cesar saved at the feet of Walcott, there was no doubt he would thread the ball between the defenders in to the net. 

While it has been Robin van Persie stealing many of the plaudits for Treble-chasing Manchester United this season, Rooney has only been too glad to assume the responsibility since Christmas. He now has 11 goals in 11 games or something and, if he continues on this hot streak, United may have the championship sewn up by late next month. 

To round off the evening, Frank Lampard, who, with a great inevitability is being offered a new contract at Chelsea, won the match with a goal of such natural instinct and quality of finish that it could have been scored by, well, a Brazilian.

Highly impressive. Long may it continue. 

Next match: Local action on Saturday, most likely the match between Bromley and Basingstoke Town in the Conference South.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Leyton Orient 0 Southend United 1

Those who believe the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy has little value or purpose should have been in the away end at Leyton Orient on Tuesday night.

It’s had many kooky sponsors over the years and it’s sometimes an ill-fitting inconvenience in an already marathon season (even Boston used to field weakened teams in it), but, for me, it’s growing in significance all the time.

It’s amazing the kind of effect a glimpse of the Wembley arch on the metaphorical horizon can have on a lower league club. Take Southend, for instance, who had 2,000 fans in East London on a wet and freezing cold Tuesday night this week to see if they could get a little closer to the Home of Football. 

They could, as Ryan Leonard’s second-half goal on the turf of their bitter rivals Orient installed them as favourites for the final entering the home second leg of this southern area final on February 20. 

Being the only Southend fans I know, it was in order to meet Mark and Steph I crammed on to the sweaty rush hour Central Line after work on Tuesday to get out to Brisbane Road. There’s not a wealth of nice eateries on Leyton High Street but me and Steph did come across a Turkish cafe close to the ground that did a fine kebab wrap for £2.99 and that satisfied the post-shift munchies. It was also preferable to standing around on a street corner in the rain eating a tray of manky chips. 

We had excellent seats towards the front of the old main stand, which serves as the away area at Orient and, with its wooden seats and claustrophobic concourses feels very out of place compared to the modernity of the rest of the ground. 

When Leonard scored early in the second-half, I put a foot up on the seat in front to get a better view of the Southend celebrations and went right through it! 

Aside from those who decided to take that a step further and rip the seats out entirely, Southend’s travelling support was a credit to their club. Noisy and passionate, they put the home fans to shame. Orient, the higher level club, contributed little to the sense of occasion and there were empty seats on all three home sides of the ground. 

As I’ve seen a few times before in this competition, those in attendance were rewarded with a really good game. In the same way he single-handedly denied Brentford in the FA Cup replay a few weeks back, Southend keeper Paul Smith once again excelled and his five brilliant saves protected the slender advantage. 

His first came in the first-half when he dived down to his left to deny David Mooney, who was five yards out and really should have done better. And at the end of the first 45, Smith denied Mooney again from a close-range effort.

Southend had won a few set-pieces but generally, lone striker Britt Assombalonga was left to plough a lone furrow. It seemed like all the players were ploughing at times, as the pitch was in a dreadful condition. 

The Shrimpers enjoyed their best spell immediately after half-time, with Ben Reeves pushed forward a little more to help Assombalonga (I don’t think I’ll ever get fed up of writing that name out). Sean Clohessy waded through the mud on the left flank and delivered it right in to Leonard’s path to score what proved to be the match winner. The celebrations were great all around us. 

It was then just a case of hanging on as Orient loaded the artillery. But first, Kevan Hurst nearly doubled the away goal advantage, but his shot hit the outside of the post.  

With ten to play, Mooney misfired again - clean through and with just Smith to beat, he tried a lob which dropped onto the roof of the net. They would come closer in the eight minutes (there was a delay as Southend’s Michael Timlin was stretchered off) of stoppage time, when Mooney struck the underside of the crossbar. Fortune favoured the blues and the ball dropped on the right side of the goal line. 

Wembley beckons for Southend. They can almost smell the £8 burgers...

Next Match: England v Brazil at Wembley

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Gainsborough Trinity 2 Boston United 2

‘Swann, Swann, wherever you may be,
You can buy our players but you can’t buy me
With your missus’s money and your plastic fans
Who all live in caravans!’

This was the witty backing track to the latest installment in a local feud that has become tetchy, tempestuous and full of trouble. 

There’s no doubt about it now - Gainsborough are our most hated rivals. We’re not in a position to pretend that we care about Lincoln, Grimsby or anyone else - in the same way that they don’t care about us. 

No, it’s all about “Tinpot” Trinity - a single telescopic lens of rage aimed at a club that, since the reign of Queen Victoria, has scarcely moved from their current league status, won or done anything worthy of note and, yet now, with a sudden injection of money believe that they can rightfully claim to be the pride of the county.

It’s been like a mafia turf war, with Peter Swann’s family riches used solely for the purpose of picking off Boston United players, enticing them with promises of riches to move up county and play for them. The latest “hit” came just this week, as striker Mark Jones, after a matter of months at York Street, went “swanning” (if you’ll excuse the pun) up to Trinity.

Their hierarchy, who had been set to pull the plug in the summer after they failed to reach the Conference Premier, offered Jones double what was on offer at Boston. You might understand this but unfortunately Jones had gone on record as saying he wasn’t the kind of player to be motivated by money. True, until someone came along and offered him a little more. 

Our honour once again insulted by Trinity’s increasing collection of our old boys and their wads of cash, 250 Pilgrims travelled to the Northolme baying for a measure of revenge. Although we rarely lose on Gainsborough’s ground, the midweek hiding we took against Altrincham (7-1) restricted the numbers and left those who did come pretty frightened of a repeat against an in-form Trinity side who are in the play-offs and still in the FA Trophy. 

Great shot of Ben Milnes celebrating the first goal
(Photo: David Shipman)
I walked in to our segregated section (a response to crowd trouble last season) about ten to two and started doling out bills of the Monopoly money I’d bought on eBay earlier in the week. I wasn’t the only one, by the end of the afternoon, the entire terrace seemed to be littered with fake notes and all those at the front were waving wedges in the direction of any Gainsborough player who dared come near us. I’d handed Jamie Yates his Monopoly wages before kick-off - he didn’t find the joke very funny. 

Despite having been allocated about half the stadium, we naturally congregated right up against the fence separating us from the home support - who didn’t seem too pleased that their ear drums would be assaulted by constant singing all afternoon. Whatever happened on the pitch, we’d be vociferous off it. Indeed, many had been on the piss since eight in the morning to make absolutely sure of this...

A pulsating Lincolnshire derby unfolded, one of the best non-league games you’ll see. On 24 minutes, Boston drew first blood. Paul Mayo’s long thrown was nudged on by Marc Newsham, and there was Ben Milnes nipping in to finish past goalkeeper Jan Budtz.

Bostonian bedlam ensued. Everyone jumped and floated about in delirium, mates embraced and a shower of tickertape and Monopoly bills was thrown up like a firework before fluttering down on the whooping crowd. Milnes led the players towards the throng. A number leapt over the hoardings and danced around on the pitch with the players. A can of Stella was launched, depositing warm lager on shoulders, and landed in the penalty box. Budtz handed it to the referee, who gave us a concerned look. The linesman stayed well back. 

Pandemonium as Ben Milnes fires Boston United into a
first-half lead (Photo: David Shipman)
United had been the better team but there were chances at both ends before half-time came with Boston in front. Our volume increased again... “SWANN, SWANN...” we boomed, over and over again in a mocking chorus to suggest that money can’t buy you everything you desire. There was a wonderful air of optimism at the break.

Trinity were invigorated by the rest and started the second-half strongly. They levelled on 63 minutes when Boston’s defence, reliable throughout most of the afternoon, failed to read Budtz’s long goal kick and Danny Hone placed the ball past Dan Haystead. They celebrated right in front of us and all manner of currency was thrown at them.

The Trinity fans edged closer to the divide, goading but the only one making any kind of noise was a loudmouth fat boy with a tatty flag. He was soon shut up. 

Six minutes later, United scythed through thanks to Conor Marshall’s perfect ball and Newsham finished at the second attempt for 2-1. There was absolute pandemonium. More spilled onto the pitch, leading the two stewards on a Keystone Cops chase along the touchline. Tickertape went up with like a fountain again. Fans ran and jumped onto the wire of the segregating fence, the Gainsborough support ran off quicker than the French army. 

A few remained and, at the gate, the stewards were shoved out the way with alarming ease. About five Boston fans broke through and punches were exchanged with some home troublemakers as everyone looked on like in a playground scrap. One Trinity lad ended up crumpled on the floor, holding his head and complaining. The stewards quickly restored everyone to their rightful places. 

Just before that, Jones had been replaced to deafening, mocking jeers. He had been useless.

A glorious victory beckoned but Trinity had enough left to equalise. Inevitably it was Yates who got it with a good finish. He certainly earned his Monopoly money. At this point, United were spent and there was only likely to be one winner. Thankfully, we held on through five minutes of stoppage time. Losing to them has become THAT unbearable now. A point was a fair outcome. 

Money can buy you a lot of things, Mr Swann, but it can’t buy support like ours. And, apparently, nor can it buy you a win against us. 

Full gallery of David's pictures here.

Next Match: Leyton Orient v Southend United in the southern area final of the JPT on Tuesday.