University of Bradford v York St John University III

6pm  22 March 2017

BUCS Northern 5D
University of Bradford 4 York St John University III 1 (att 60)

I had planned to watch Bradford Park Avenue's visit to Darlington this evening, but that fixture failed an afternoon pitch inspection so I ended up at a game in Bradford instead.

BUCS - British Universities and Colleges Sport - matches are usually on Wednesday afternoons,  but Bradford made use of the floodlights at their Laisteridge Lane ground, kicking off at the useful (to me) time of 6pm.

The crowd was bigger than I'm used to at BUCS games, but that owed much to this being a title decider. The teams went into this, their final fixture, level on points so it was winner takes all, with a draw apparently favouring the visitors.

Bradford were excellent in the first half, combining skill and strength to good effect and fully deserving their 2-0 half time lead. York St John hit back early in the second period, and having reduced the arrears enjoyed their best spell in the match as they looked likely to equalise.

They couldn't capitalise on their pressure though and eventually Bradford clicked back into gear and scored a well-taken third goal. The hosts got a fourth in stoppage time, which was harsh on York St John.

I think the all-weather pitch at the university's sports park is new, I don't recall Bradford University playing games here previously. It's a typical 3G set up with the pitch enclosed by a high fence.

High-rise student accommodation looms over the pitch at the near end, while the nearby Bradford Grand Mosque provides a striking backdrop.

All in all a good evening, despite the miserable weather. I doubt Darlington v Bradford Park Avenue, had it been on, would have been as fun to watch.

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