YOU could have seen various fireworks displays across the island on Saturday but the blue touch paper was lit towards the end of a dull and insipid JCK Division Two encounter involving Douglas and District versus Malew that finished all square.
In the closing stages of this fixture there were a few bouts of handbags as the hosts conceded numerous free-kicks on the edge of their penalty area. One of them resulted in John Mitchell scoring the equalising goal for the visitors.
And just before the full-time whistle, Chris Bowers kicked out on Daniel Thirwell (playing outfield in the last five minutes) which saw the D&D player given his marching orders. For D&D, as the saying goes: ‘It all went a bit Pete Tong!’
Malew were minus seven first team regulars for this match, so they brought a patched-up squad to Noble’s Park. The southerners last tasted victory in the league more than two months ago so the footballing omens looked favourably for the hosts to register a win.
However, things didn’t go according to the script when the visitors took the lead with only six minutes on the clock. Kevin Brown’s long ball over the top caught the D&D defence flat-footed and Mitchell raced clear to chip in the opener.
This propelled the hosts into life, using the width to good effect which provided the outlet for their equalising goal. Adam Rosevear raced along the right, his cut-back found Lawrence Looney whose shot was blocked but the rebound fell to Jamie Corrin to drive into the bottom left.
D&D had the advantage of playing down the slope in the second half, which they capitalised on by taking the lead on 58 minutes. Corrin swung in a free-kick and Richard Brant met it to nod his effort into the net.
It should have sparked a goal rush for the hosts but they were too laissez-faire in attack, Konrad Kumor had an effort that was tipped over and, following a D&D corner, Thirwell and the ball were bundled into the net but the goal was correctly ruled out.
Malew went for broke in the closing stages, pushing players forward and not letting the hosts settle. This policy was rewarded with the equalising goal.
A free-kick was awarded just outside the penalty area, Gregson and Mitchell deliberating who should take responsibility and it was the latter whose effort bent past the defensive wall, clipping the inside of the post before nestling into the net.
Things got from bad to worse when D&D were reduced to 10 players and relief was felt all-round when referee Peter Lewis blew his whistle to put to an end a quite awful game.
D&D: Alex Mazzone, Graham Coates (Kevin Doyle 87m), Andrew Gosnell, Chris Bowers, Scott Keable, Richard Brant, Adam Rosevear, Ben Skelton (Konrad Kumor 58 ), Lawrence Looney, Stephen Horner, Jamie Corrin. Sub not used: Juan Kinrade
Malew: Daniel Thirwell, Kevin Brown, Sam Cain, Heath Crag, Ben Gregson, Andy McLarney, Adam Drewett, Wes Omar, Stephen Smith, John Mitchell, Vince Willis (Ashley Egan 68m)
Referee: Peter Lewis
Booked: Thirwell (Malew)
Sent off: Bowers (D&D)
Man of the Match: Corrin (D&D)
Match rating: HIIII
l Marown continued their 100 per cent winning start to the JCK Division Two season with a win over Braddan but they were made to work hard for the points.
Jon Padi netted for the Swans but goals from Juan Killip and Michael McHale sealed a 2-1 victory.
Union Mills maintained their quest from promotion with a resounding 9-1 victory over an out-of-sorts Pulrose at Garey Mooar. Steven Quine and AJ Suckling led the scoring with two goals apiece while there were single strikes from Karl Dobbin, Matt Cain, David Hicks, Chris Kelly and Kenny Magee. Craig Cowin netted for the visitors.
Michael consolidated their place in the top four thanks to goals from Antony Corkill, James Ford and Matty Brand earn 3-1 win over bottom club Ronaldsway, while Colby and Foxdale battled out a 1-1 draw at Glen Road.