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Pirates: Darcy Ward and Matt Ford blast Poole's 'jealous' critics
DARCY Ward claimed Pirates’ detractors were jealous of Poole’s success as he joined promoter Matt Ford in hitting back at the club’s critics.
Dominant Pirates marched to their fifth Elite League title in the past 11 years on Tuesday night – but an army of rival supporters quickly lined up to take a swipe at the champions.
Pirates and Wimborne Road chief Ford have often been regular targets for the Internet keyboard warriors with some questioning Poole’s approach and spending during their dramatic revival this season.
The Dorset club’s trophy presentation and celebrations after the grand final second leg at Birmingham were also carried out as Abba song Money Money Money was played over the Perry Barr public address system.
But after watching his re-shaped team recover from the bottom of the table to lift the silverware, Ford launched an impassioned defence of Pirates.
Ford told the Daily Echo: “All I can say is, as I have said countless times, that I would be more than happy for people to know what my number one is earning, if we could discuss everybody else’s.
“People that don’t know believe they do, but they know nothing. It is an old thing where if you are successful, people knock you. If that is the case, we are doing something right. We don’t spend more than other teams.
“It isn’t the promoters that I have the problems with, it is the Internet etcetera, but promoters know how the club is run and that we only spend what we have got.”
Skipper Ward, the youngest captain in Pirates’ history after taking over from injured Chris Holder, said he was delighted to claim his second championship gold medal in four seasons.
Asked about Poole’s critics, Ward said: “I think it is a bit of jealousy. We have been in the finals for the past four years and if we haven’t won, we have finished second. Sometimes, that hurts other people.
“But, for me, I am just happy to be a part of it. We were bottom of the league and just happy to try to get to the play-offs this year.
“We had Swindon in the semi-finals and we thought they were a bit stronger but we turned up and, maybe, they didn’t have the best day. But we are here with the gold medal and trophy and we will take it back down to Dorset.”
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