By Bob Wray
South Shields face high flying Ebac Northern League Division One club West Auckland Town on Tuesday at Peterlee’s Eden Lane in the Durham Challenge Cup Second Round, with the kick-off at 7.30pm.
West are currently third top and enjoying a good season, and are currently the only unbeaten First Division side away from home in league competition.
The Mariners will be therefore provided with a stern test of their credentials in what hopefully could be a good football match if not affected unduly by weather considerations.
However, the forecast is not good, and the prospect of even snow is not to be dismissed, although heavy rain alone could cause further problems to the already rain soaked playing surface from previous downpours that made the pitch unplayable on Saturday.
However, we remain at least hopeful and optimistic for the match to proceed.
The previous encounter between the two sides this season in the FA Vase first round resulted in a 5-0 victory for West, so we shall see if the Mariners can rise to the challenge on this occasion.
Not forgotten is the 5-5 league result a couple of season ago, when a 4-1 half-time Shields lead in a game played in gale force conditions became somewhat of a farce by full time.
Of that Shields team, only Stephen Ramsey and Barrie Smith remain with the club, while West include former Mariner and influential midfielder Robbie Briggs.
West Auckland Town. AWAY.
P8. W5. D3. L0. F13. A4. Total GD 29. Pts. 55. League table 3rd.
Last six games 16 points, form table first.
South Shields. HOME.
P12. W4. D5. L3. F22. A25. Total GD-5. Pts. 32. League table 14th.
Last six games seven points, form table 11th.
South Shields’ next match is on Saturday, January 11th, away to Northallerton Town in the league.