Quakers lose first friendly

First published in Match Reports

Darlington manager Martin Gray was pleased with his side’s performance in the testimonial for Newcastle Benfield keeper Andrew Grainger on Saturday.

A healthy crowd of around 150 turned up to pay tribute to the long-serving former Darlington youth-teamer, who finished on the winning side by 2-1 against Quakers.

“The main idea on Saturday was to give players some minutes under their belts. Some players were unavailable for various reasons. Overall, I was quite pleased.”

Benfield, under the new management of Neil Saxton, took the lead when former Darlington player Mark Convery scored with a cross-cum-shot, but early in the second half Stephen Thompson levelled, when he cut in from the left and fired past Grainger.

If the game had more than just a friendly status, then there would have been a debate about the winner.

Darlington defender Chris Hunter went down in the centre circle after suffering a blow, and the Darlington defence stopped expecting the referee to stop the game, allowing Michael Riley to run through and score.

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