The town’s largest Walking Football Club, the Grimsby Ancient Mariners, sent three teams to play in the first round, with 18 other clubs, of the People’s FA Cup at Doncaster on Saturday, 24th February.
The three teams, all players over 55, with average age 67, played against sides of 50 plus, no mean challenge at all.
Two of their teams failed to qualify from the group stages but equipped themselves very well and did the club and the local area proud.
The third team after a shaky start, 2-2 in game one and a 4-0 reverse in game two seem to spur them on to victories in games three and four to qualify for the knockout stage.
Victory in the quarter final against a Leeds side 1-0, a 0-0 draw against a Hull side, winning the penalty shoot out with Steve Wells, Ancient Mariners goalkeeper netting the winning spot kick.
That took them into the final against a very strong Barnsley side, who had scored loads of goals all afternoon until the faced the Grimsby side. The final score 0-0 flattered the Barnsley side, even they commented they were second best but GAM couldn’t beat their keeper.
Barnsley won through on penalties to take the win and qualify for the semi finals late in March at Leeds. Due to the number of teams participating in Doncaster the runners up also qualified for the semis.
Qualifying for the next round is a massive result considering the average age of the Grimsby team and they have really done their club and the local area proud.
The victorious Grimsby Ancient Mariners team were: Steve Wells, Ken Thompson, Steve King, Gary Kershaw, Paul May and John Molloy and not forgetting the other 14 who made the trip.
Also thanks to Graham Rodger for his fantastic support.