Doncaster Rovers beware! Hartlepool United unbeaten in three on the box

Jake Gray celebrates scoring in the win over Leyton Orient on Sky Sports
Jake Gray celebrates scoring in the win over Leyton Orient on Sky Sports

Hartlepool United and the TV cameras hardly go together like Morecambe & Wise.

Doncaster Rovers are not going to be quaking in their boots ahead of Sunday’s second-bottom against second-top showdown at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.

A national Poolie holiday was declared after clinical Pools got the Sky monkey off their back with a Monday Night Football special.


Sky Sports will be there to show the action, having picked the League Two match which has so much riding on it, at both ends of the table.

Doncaster need to win to have a chance of putting another championship trophy into the Ferguson household.

Pools must take the three points and hope Newport don’t against Notts County to keep the name Hartlepool in the Football League.

While Pools are hardly a serial TV success story, they are unbeaten in three games on the box.

Here are five memorable TV moments from Pools.

Pools 3 Leyton Orient 1

League Two

Nov 15, 2015. Att: 4,081

Poor Leyton Orient have not really recovered from what they saw as a national humiliation.

The Eastenders turned up flying high in the table and looking to move to within a couple of points of the automatic promotion slots.

But Pools did not receive the script and promptly sent them home with a flea in their ears.

It all seemed to be going the way of the O’s when Bradley Pritchard found the bottom corner of the net to give his team a deserved lead.

But Pools levelled when Kudus Oyenuga scored from the spot after Alan Dunne’s stupid handball.

And the second half became the Jake Gray show.

His long-range shot went in via the hapless Dunne and a superb Gray strike sealed victory for Ronnie Moore’s team.

Aghast at losing to Pools, the Orient owner ‘imprisoned’ his squad in a four-star hotel for the rest of the week as punishment.

Pools 2 Salford City 0

FA Cup second round replay

Dec 15, 2015. Att: 4,374

The BBC had been at the original tie at Moor Lane, which had finished 1-1, the Beeb most put out at the non-leaguers, owned by the ‘Class of 92’ had not humiliated Pools like Blyth did 12 monhs earlier.

BT Sport turned up at the Vic for the replay and probably wished they hadn’t.

But the money was a boost for Pools, who were absolutely atrocious.

Salford bossed the game but could not score and they were made to pay as Scott Fenwick thumped in a header at the start of extra-time from a pinpoint Rhys Oates cross and on-loan Mikael Mandron rifled in his only goal for the club in the dying seconds.

At least Pools did not bottle it as they had against the Spartans.

Huddersfield 0 Pools 2

League One

16 August, 2004. Att: 9,968

A national Poolie holiday was declared after clinical Pools got the Sky monkey off their back with a Monday Night Football special.

Pools were a very good side to be fair, having been unlucky to lose out in the play-offs three months earlier.

Neale Cooper’s side had started the season in top form and went fourth after this win at the McAlpine Stadium.

Adam Boyd was the inspiration, setting up two goals inside three second-half minutes.

Kevin Betsy scored the first, blasting into the top corner after Boyd had put in a fine cross.

Boyd soon evaded the home defence again to find the unmarked Mark Tinkler, who fired home.

Pools 2 Tranmere 0

League One play-off

May 2005. Att: 6,604

Pools were under the guidance of caretaker Martin Scott after the sacking of Cooper in the last week of the regular season.

And Pools were chuckling after giving Tranmere a bit of a going over in the first leg of this play-off semi-final.

Boyd swept in the first having got on the end of a Jon Daly flick-on.

And Boyd made it 2-0 in the second half as he sauntered towards the away box before firing a superb, low shot past John Achterberg.

In truth, this should have been a rout but for a terrible miss by Daly and a great Achterberg save from a Matty Robson free-kick.

Burton Albion 0 Pools 1

FA Cup second round

December 2003. Att: 3,132

It was a toss up between this and a League Cup penalty shoot-out win for match five of the top five.

But this edged it because it was the first live televised Pools win.

The BBC cameras were at Eton Park for the visit of Neale Cooper’s team to the then non-league outfit.

Joel Porter was a new name for Poolies, having only just made his debut against Swindon at the Vic.

However, he announced himself in style with a fine goal to send Pools through to a third round FA Cup derby at the Stadium of Light.

It was the first goal of a love affair between Porter and Pools and vice-versa.