Memory Match – Number Nineteen
14th FEBRUARY 1998
Match – Torquay United 5-1 Hull City
Competition – Division Three
Venue – Plainmoor
Attendance – 2,793
Kevin Hodge’s team had been inconsistent in the first of half of the 97-98 season. However, the arrival of striker Jason Roberts on loan had helped us push up the league, and this fixture followed an impressive 4-1 win at Brighton the previous Saturday.
Unsurprisingly Hodges kept the same team, with Roberts again paired alongside Rodney Jack. Andy Gurney was a marauding right wing-back, whilst the experienced Alex Watson and Jon Gittens anchored the centre of the defence.
It wasn’t long before United continued their goal-scoring form. A free kick from midfielder Gary Clayton was curled in low and accurately, and missed everyone to find the corner of the net.
The away team responded well and equalised through Benney who volleyed past Ken Veysey, and they almost took the lead through ex-Gulls striker Duane Darby.
The next goal was however to be United’s. Rodney Jack pushed on down the right-hand side and forced an excellent save from the goalkeeper, but the ever alert Kevin Hill was there to head home and give us the lead.
Before half-time things got even better and it was that man Hill again. The provider this time was Gurney with a cross to the far post, and Kevin managed to prod home from close range.
The second half saw a fog descend across Plainmoor, but it did not deter Torquay from playing some excellent football. Roberts came close after combining well with Jack, whilst Gurney hit a splendid 30 yarder that only went narrowly wide.
No matter, as after 58 minutes it was game over. Lovely interplay between Roberts, Jack and Gurney ended with a cross for Leon Hapgood to head past the despairing Thomson in the Tigers goal.
Number five was not long coming either! This time it was that man Rodney Jack using his electric pace and then finishing right footed from just inside the area. It was a deserved goal for the attacker, and rounded off a brilliant afternoon for Hodges men.
Torquay United XI:
Veysey, Gurney, Leadbitter, Robinson, Gittens, Watson, Clayton, Hill, Hapgood, Roberts, Jack
GOALS: Clayton (14), Hill (27, 43), Hapgood (58), Jack (72)
SUBS: Mitchell, Bedeau
HEADLINES OF THE DAY
WEATHER – An unexpected heatwave hits the UK with many areas experienced their warmest February days ever.
FILM – Blockbuster movie Titanic is top of the UK film box office
SPORTS –Sheffield Wednesday and Liverpool draw 3-3 with Michael Owen scoring a hat-trick
*FROM THE TUFC OFFICIAL PROGRAMME ‘MATCH IN TIME’ FEATURE 15-16