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Ipswich 2 Grimsby 2

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 22/02/2003

NOT for the first time this season, a sickening late goal stopped the Mariners from coming away from Portman Road with three precious points in their relegation battle. Two first half goals by Groves and Boulding had put Town in a commanding position, before they succumbed to another late strike.

Grimsby started with their two new signings of Oster and Hughes in the 4-5-1 starting XI, and Town got off to the perfect start on 12 minutes when Paul Groves stabbed in a goal from a free kick, which was adjudged to have crossed the line. Although their early lead was to last just four minutes, the Mariners deservedly went in front again when Michael Boulding ran into the area and slotted past the Ipswich 'keeper.

In the second half, Grimsby became increasingly more defensive as the game went on, trying as they have done on so many occasions this season to defend a narrow lead. It looked as though this was to be one of the times when their backs-to-the-wall policy had paid off, as they withstood long periods of pressure by Ipswich, until the Blues' late strike spoilt an otherwise perfect day.

Although a point at Ipswich was not enough to stop Grimsby entering the bottom three once again, the manner of the team performance, after last week's debacle at Gillingham, was an enormous improvement from last weekend. The much needed two new additions of Hughes and Oster to the squad both looked promising for tough fixture list over the next few weeks, and overall there were far more positives to be taken from the game than there were bad points.

Full report tomorrow.


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