The Durham County Challenge Cup. It has a bit of a ring to it, doesn’t it? And a long and notable history, going back to 1884, when Sunderland were the first winners. Sunderland, or Sunderland A, the reserves I guess back in the day, dominated from the start through to the end of the twenties, with nineteen victories before they must have decided it was a bit beneath them, and didn’t win it again until, the now simply Reserves, triumphed in 1966. Bishops won it for the first time in 1892, Stockton in 1895, Tow Law in 1896, Shildon in 1908, and plenty of other names that are still around up to Consett last year. But in the context of today the name that stands out locally is of course our neighbours Ryhope CW, winners in 1978. Must be plenty of those old boys still knocking about, any at the match today I wonder? Maybe nor given we beat the CW on Saturday, but you never know. Anyway a damn fine competition to win, and the two teams turning out at Meadow Park tonight must have a decent chance of lifting the Cup this season, but only one can go through tonight of course. Best of luck to both teams, may the best win and all that.
Decent win in awful conditions on Saturday, in a surprisingly good game, all things considered. Worrying that once again we had a load of changes, seems to be every game at the minute. Including the venerable Colin Larkin having to fill in at left back, or wing back or some such. He did fine of course, as an old pro would, apart from the penalty! Anyway, makes you wonder what tonight’s team will be, could be a case of perm any sixteen from twenty five or thereabouts. I am sure we will get a decent squad out, one way or another.
In the wider world the BBC Sports Personality of the Year was on on Sunday night, Lineker doing his usual bad impression of a James Bond audition, thank you Gary, we will be in touch, and Baddiel and Skinner singing Three Lions out of tune to the embarrassment of Ian Broudie, who wisely refused to say anything after the event; just get the money and get off was clearly his view of matters. Tyson Fury gave probably the best speech of the night but was kept off the shortlist for Personality of the Year, which was won by the cyclist; let’s hope no drug stories emerge in coming months. And the netball players won sports moment of the year for beating the Aussies with a last minute score at the Commonwealth Games; never a bad thing, but more dramatic than Fury rising from the dead in the last in LA? Maybe not.