Brought directly from the ground from the Fat Controller.
The Fat Controller had no hesitation at half time when he described this as the best exhibition of attacking football from the Saddlers away from home for many a long year.
Walsall went in three goals to nil up against a team challenging for a play off place and it was completely deserved. A Julian Joachim shot was deflected into his own net by Westwood as early as the tenth minute and Joachim got a goal of the season contender in the 14th, by beating two defenders before hammering the ball home from 20 yards as the other defenders stood and watched.
Joachim later went off, worryingly holding his hamstrings, to be replaced by Fryatt, but the Fat Controller says it didn’t look too serious.
With half time nearing, Fryatt released Andy Surman, in his last appearance for the time being, on a one on one and he made no mistake.
The Fat Controller reported that the middle of the park was being completely dominated by Osborn, Standing and Surman, with both wingers (especially Wright) looking very dangerous. The defence dealt easily with the few threats that materialised during the course of the half.
Some 200 to 300 home fans were seen to leave as number three went in.
The second half of these games can be an anti climax, but this time, it was only in terms of no more goals being scored. Walsall again dominated the play, with chances going begging. Fryatt could easily have had a hat-trick and, if their chances had been taken, this would have been a completely embarrassing afternoon for Hartlepool. As it was, the only scoring came from a Boyd penalty for the home side, after Pead was adjudged to have brought down his man.
Merson did change things further, bringing off Mark Wright for Jorge Leitao and Simon Osborn for Mark Kinsella, making his re-appearance after his long term injury and suspension, but nothing altered the Saddlers’ total domination of the game.
The only down side were bookings for Pead, Perpetuini and Leitao.
With Torquay also winning this afternoon, the Manager of the Month award for April has to be between Merson and Rosenior.
Man of the Match – almost impossible to say, but, as games are won and lost in the middle of the park, pick any one of the five who played there.