A match was held at Roots Hall home of Southend United on 18th May between a team representing The Savings Guru (managed by the Commander himself, James Blower) and s select Journalists XI. It was a keenly contested affair, played in great spirit, which saw The Savings Guru XI triumph in the most bizarre of circumstances. The match was on a knife-edge what Commander Blower rejoined the match in about the 75th minute. Yes, Blower showed some nice touches despite his age and fitness having seen better years – BUT, and it is a big but, but simulation yet again played a significant role in deciding a match. Blower, chasing a lost cause into the penalty area, then flung himself to the deck sliding some 5 to 10 metres. The referee should have consulted his linesman, but gave the penalty to the amazement of those playing and the crowd as well.
The scene was set, as Blower appointed himself as penalty taker, and he dispatched the penalty away into the roof of the net. This was the tipping point for the Jounalists XI and they never recovered. The sooner technology is brought into the game the quicker we can eliminate simulation from the much loved game.