Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 07 Sep 2016, 11:53

Stalemate At The Top

Aberdither united 0, Eastroke united 0.

There was a full house at Aberdither for what, table-wise, was the most important match of the season so far; top versus 3rd.

Eastroke provided the first minor surprise, by lining up in a traditional w-m formation. They used this in the latter part of last season, and reverted to it last week whilst retrieving a point from a two goal half-time deficit against Hodwell.
It soon became apparent that this wasn't likely to be the all-action match most were hoping for. Aberdither didn't want to suffer successive home defeats, while Eastroke didn't want to drop too far behind the leaders. Each side wanted to win, of course, but there was an element of caution in the play of both.

The first half was noticeably devoid of goalmouth incidents, as there was only one for each side. At about the mid-point, a Paul Mariner shot was turned around the post by Martin Hodge, and then, with half-time approaching, Pat Nevin's shot from the right was deflected through a ruck of players, only for John Hurst to be perfectly positioned to head off the line.

The second half began in a similar pattern. The first chance was when a Barry Horne pass put Fred Pickering through, but defenders closed in on him so quickly he couldn't get in his shot. At the other end, Kevin Kilbane and Martin Dobson combined well down the left, for the latter to blast a shot towards goal, but Hodge was well positioned to make the save. The keeper had to repeat this, a few minutes later, when a defender's slip again let in Kilbane on the left. This time, Hodge was able to gather the ball and he cleared it to Jimmy Gabriel, who took it up field before finding Pickering in space, for once, and this time it was Southall who had to make the best save of the match, to preserve his team's, and his own, clean sheet.

Each side was finally striving for that all-important goal, but by this time, the defences were warmed up too, so the match ended goalless, possibly correctly.

Aberdither would probably have been the more disappointed. Had there been a man of the match award, it would almost certainly have gone to John Hurst, for his many interceptions in defence, and not forgetting his header off the line. However, if you turn up to watch your top-of-the-table team at home, wouldn't you hope the candidates for the award would have been playing further up the field?

What about the match itself? Pulsating and thrill-a-minute it certainly wasn't. It would probably best be described as close, careful and, most of all, strategic. In many ways in resembled the games we watch coming from the Pendle area, if only the standard could have been as good!
Personally, I'll take this type of game every time, but the question must be asked, I think, as to whether this type of game will encourage the paying customers, or turn them away.

Aberdither United: (4-3-3) Southall; Stevens, Hurst, Labone, Van den Hauwe; Bracewell, Cahill, Dobson; Mackie, Mariner, Kilbane.

Eastroke United: ( 1 to 11 ) Hodge; Patterson, Pointon; Gabriel, Lyons, McCall: Nevin, Horne, Pickering, Stuart, Temple.

Next time, Dave Blackpool's off to watch the only Division One side he hasn't yet reported on, Western Villa, when they visit Mill Town. Hopefully you will join us and read what he thinks of them.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 14 Sep 2016, 13:53

Back-to-Basics Working For Western

Mill Town 0, Weatern Villa 1.

Western Villa are having an odd season. They set out to try and become more adventurous but goals weren't coming for them at home, and they were conceding more in away games. Following a return to their original, rather cautious formation, they came into this game following two home goalless draws. Signs of a recovery but hardly helping their position in the league table.

Naturally enough, they started cautiously, but effectively, as in the first quarter Mill Town only had managed one shot, from Gary Megson who broke down the right, only for his shot to be headed away by Mick Horswill. At the other end, Michael Evans had a good chance, but shot straight at Romain Larrieu. Just before half-time, David Lawson could only palm away a Bob Latchford shot, and Yannick Bolasie followed up to put the ball in the net, but had clearly fouled the goalkeeper in doing so. Right on the stroke of half-time, a defender's slip let in Kevin Hodges down the right, but he shot wide.

A few minutes into the second half, Craig Skinner made a long solo run down the right, but miscued his shot which went well wide. Following a long period of end-to-end play, but with defences on top, the next chance was also for the visitors, when, from a corner, another Evans shot was well blocked by Mark Smith. From that resulting corner on the right, Skinner played the ball down the touchline to Gary Poole, whose powerful, low centre was headed home by Ian Stonebridge.

The lead was no less than the visitors deserved, but, straight from the restart, Bradley Wright-Phillips made a jinking run down the middle, but Adrian Burrows was alert to it and got in his block tackle just in time to prevent the shot. In the closing seconds, the lead was almost doubled when a misplaced clearance went straight to Skinner, but his instant shot hit the outside of the near post.

So Western Villa managed to score and keep a clean sheet; enough to get their hosts looking over their shoulders as the season enters its second half.
Mill Town had their fair share of possession and territory, but made little impression on their visitors' well-oganised defence, which coped well with most of the tasks it was presented with.

Mill Town: (4-3-3) Larrieu; Nisbet, Mark Smith, Tyrone James, Sullivan; Kevin Hodges, Megson, Capaldi; Wright-Phillips, Latchford, Bolasie.

Western Villa (4-3-3) Lawson; Poole, Provan, Adrian Burrows, Horswill; Randell, Piper, Steve McCall; Skinner, Michael Evans, Stonebridge.

As the season enters its second half, it's not a difficult decision as to where our intrepid reporter is heading next time. South Barsham v. Aberdither United, or second v. first. There will be plenty who will want to know what happens in this match, we hope you are one.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 15 Sep 2016, 08:05

Although I already knew, I've just spent several hours proving to myself that I'm still a computing dimwit. I was hoping to put a document of the mid-season league tables here. Here they are, but not as neat, I'm afraid.

Division One (all played 9 games)
Aberdither Utd. 18 Pts.
South Barsham 15
Eastroke Utd. 14
Bullford 13
Iveley Park 13
Mekchester Rov. 12
Hodwell 12
Mill Town 10
Western Villa 8
Hinton Utd. 2
Last edited by BlackpoolRock on 15 Sep 2016, 08:17, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 15 Sep 2016, 08:12

Now that I've proved to all that I'm still a computing dimwit, here are the other clubs.

Division Two:
Reiver Forest 19 pts., Blundell City 17, Flimside 16, Blackridge Town 14, Brimpton Rovers 13, Pressley Rangers 12, Alsworth 11, Greyston Town 8,
Mill Athletic 8, Molton Utd 6.

The Conference (after 6 matches):
Ellerfield Ath. 12pts., Highwood Ath. 10, Danefield 10, St. Rebouro 10, Peakville 7, Crickten Junction 1.

Some of you with long memories just might recognise a few names from rather a long time ago.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby Donegal Subbuteo » 17 Sep 2016, 06:34

Great stuff BPR. Have you tried using http://www.fixturelist.com for your results and tables. All you do is enter your teams, your scores as you go along and fixturelist displays the league table for you. I find it quite good. I wish I had a bit more time to start my own solo career again!
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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 17 Sep 2016, 07:53

Thank you for your interest and recommendation, DS. My difficulty is not with the fixtures and league tables but getting them from my files and onto this Forum. I suspect I would have the same problem even if the tables were produced for me.

In the meantime, if anyone would like to see the league tables I will willingly email them, if they don't mind.

Similarly, if anyone is struggling with arranging league fixtures, without the concern of deadlines, I can provide a fixture list for any realistic number of teams. It would be in number form, so all you would have to do is allocate each number to a team.

I'm afraid much of this modern technology remains a mystery to me. In my world ICT stands for Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 21 Sep 2016, 15:27

Aberdither Go Six Points Clear

South Barsham 0, Aberdither United 1.

When the league fixtures were announced, it is quite possible that Aberdither United would have thought, possibly even believed, that they would be topping the table as the season entered its second half. Neither they, nor anybody else, would have expected their hosts on this occasion to be also their nearest rivals.

It was the hosts who started the brighter, when a passing move between Neil Hague and Chris Barker down the left, set up a shot for Mike Bickle, but his shot was too weak to trouble Neville Southall. south Barsham were playing well at this stage, and it was the midpoint of the half before Aberdither produced their first shot, when a through pass from Martin Dobson was run onto by Jamie Mackie, but Rhys Wilmot saved well. From the corner, a slip from a defender let in Paul Mariner, and his shot required an excellent point blank save by Wilmot to keep the match scoreless.

During the remainder of the half, the visitors had several goal bound shots, including two each from Kevin Kilbane and Paul Bracewell, some of which were blocked by defenders, others saved by the busy Wilmot.

Early on in the second half, South Barsham had their best spell of the match. It started with a run from inside his own half by Alan Welsh, who, when he realised his team mates were all marked, followed his own through pass, and his shot skimmed the outside of the post, with Southall nowhere. Then Wayne O'Sullivan followed his run down the right, Derek Rickard ran onto the centre, but his shot hit the side netting. At the other end, a rather weak clearance by Wilmot found Kilbane, who shot well, but the keeper atoned for his error. Kilbane was always making himself available on the left side of the attack, and yet another shot narrowly went just beyond the far post.

Just when it began to look like finishing goalless, another left wing passing move, this time between Kilbane and Mariner, finished with the latter hammering a shot into the far top corner of the net. For all his good work, Wilmot, this time, was given no chance.

South Barsham tried to respond, but this Aberdither defence was in no mood to give them the slightest sniff of an equaliser, and so they, due to the other results, have extended their lead to six points.

South Barsham (4-4-2): Wilmot; Harrison, Saxton, Hague, Barker; O'Sullivan, Evers, Welsh, Blizzard; Bickle, Rickard.

Aberdither United (4-3-3): Southall; Stevens, Hurst, Labone, van den Hauwe; Bracewell, Cahill, Dobson; Mackie, Mariner, Kilbane.

Elsewhere: Hinton Utd. 2,Eastroke Utd 1; Iveley Park 1,Mill Town 2; Bullford 1,Western Villa 1; Melchester Rov. 1,Hodwell 1.

Next time it's the F.A.Cup, and Dave Blackpool's off to see how former League Champions Pressley Rangers can get on against Division Two's surprise team so far, the unbeaten Reiver Forest. On paper it's a mismatch, but we all know where matches are not played! We also plan to bring you brief reports from all the other nine games. Please join us then.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 26 Sep 2016, 11:52

Cup Gets Off to Good Start

Pressley Rangers 0, Reiver Forest 2.

Our reporting of the F.A.Cup begins with the visit of Division Two's surprise team, to the home of last season's runners-up, and League champions of Season 02.
Pressley started carefully, or should that be cautiously, whereas Reiver began by playing sweeping passes at many different angles, as they do. It's always good to watch, but can lead to inconsistencies in form.
The first scoring opportunity of the match came, for the visitors, after four minutes, when a series of passes across the front of the penalty box ended with Nathan Thomas shooting wide. The Reiver forwards were working well at this stage and Gordon West was kept alert with Richard Reynolds, Alan Rogers and Jeff Cook all peppering his goal with shots, several of which went narrowly wide.
As the half reached its mid-point, there appeared to be little on, with the Reiver forwards well marked, when Thomas played a short pass to his right, and Lee Cox came racing in from a long way out to strike the ball beautifully passed West.
The home side responded with several good passing moves, usually down the right, with Alan Ball and Alex Young prominent. Paul Connolly joined in one such move and his short pass put Ball through, clear on goal, only to be thwarted by a near perfect block by Brian McGlinchey, tackling back.
Reiver continued to look dangerous on the break, though, and the last move of the first half saw a solo break from Reynolds come close to doubling the lead, but his shot went narrowly wide.
The second half began with the same pattern of play, but it wasn't long before Pressley fell for another classic counter-punch. Three passes took the ball upfield for Cook, this time, to place a short pass to his right, for Thomas to run in from a deep position and shoot home. He does this quite often for Reiver, and there was no fluke about this strike.
It was now time for the hosts to give it everything, and again most moves were down the right with Ball and Young playing major roles. Three corners produced goal-bound headers, but each time Jake Cole was well positioned to save on his line. One move down the left ended with a shot from Terry Darracott, but he mis-hit his shot so badly that the ball went out for a throw-in on the far side. A shot from Paul Rideout did find the net, only to have his attempt disallowed for a shove on a defender. With time running out, Phil Neville's pass put Young clear, but this was to be Jake Cole's day.
Pressley aren't the first team, and certainly won't be the last, to discover that when your luck's out, the ball sometimes never rolls for you. They had, after all, had much the better of the last three-quarters of the game.
Meanwhile, their victors must wait and see what their reward will be for their first ever victory in a cup-tie.

Pressley Rangers (4-3-1-2) West; Connolly, Lescott, Higgins, Darracott; Carsley, Neville, Ebbrell; Ball; Young, Rideout.

Reiver Forest (4-2-4) Cole, Hore, Rounsevell, Green, McGlinchey; Cox, Brennan; Thomas, Cook, Reynolds, Alan Rogers.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 26 Sep 2016, 14:49

Summary of other cup results

Dave Blackpool went to Pressley for his report, but did he go to the right match? We would like you to decide that for yourselves.

Pride of place must go to Second Division Mill Athletic. They may be having a poor time in the league, but they managed to do what few top flight teams have done so far and beat South Barsham. Andy Rogers and Wayne Burnett scored the two first half goals, and they kept a clean sheet in the second, to hold on for the victory. The scorers were the two players brought into the side before their previous match, and the team have scored five goals without reply since.
The other First Division sides didn't exactly cover themselves with glory, either. When Michael Evans scored an early goal for Western Villa against struggling Conference newcomers Crickten Junction, some were beginning to wonder how many numbers the scoreboard goes up to. The visitors then began to make a game of it. The home goal was seldom threatened, but the win was never to look comfortable. The other new boys, Ellerfield Athletic went one better at Bullford, and took the lead though an Alan Banks goal. Tommy Tynan replied with a brace either side of half-time.
Hodwell weren't expecting an easy tie against Blundell City, and they didn't get one. City were in an attacking mood and Chris Clark gave them the early lead, which was so nearly added to when a Fred Binney shot smashed against the post just on half-time. All seemed to be going well for the visitors before a defensive howler let in Sean McCarthy for the equaliser. This was the best footballing game of the round; the replay is eagerly anticipated.
Danefield struck a good blow for the Conference teams with a 2-0 win over in form Flimside. Full-back Jon Ashton was well forward for the opening goal, and with Flimside going all out for a late equaliser, Carl Fletcher led a late breakaway to and netted the second himself.
We nearly went to the St. Rebouro v Blackridge Town game, and we wouldn't have been disappointed, as the home side, from the Conference, gave a good showing against their rejuvenated visitors, before a second half goal from Trevor Ross proved decisive. Blackridge gave a debut to Jim Paterson, and looked much better balanced playing a simpler formation with a wide player on each flank.
For the third time in four seasons the draw sent Greyston Town to Brimpton Rovers in this round. They've each won one so far. This match was disappointing, with two sets of midfielders cancelling each other out. Greyston thought they were on the way to the second round when Chris Leadbitter gave them the lead midway through the second half, but Dwight Marshall equalised a couple of minutes later. The replay must be an improvement on this one. The Alsworth v Molton United game was goalless, but not lacking in tension as both sides went for a winner and both goalkeepers were kept busy.
Finally, in the all-Conference game, an early strike, against the run of play, by Warren Feeney for Highwood Athletic, turned out to be the only goal of the match, despite the best efforts of a rather unlucky Peakville.

We await the second round draw, when the winning teams are joined in the last sixteen by last season's top six teams.

Meanwhile, it's back to the League next time, and Dave Blackpool's off to watch Eastroke host Melchester. It could be last chance saloon for either if they wish to be influencing the higher reaches of Division One at the end of the season.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 27 Sep 2016, 15:27

Just a Cup round-up.

Replays: Greyston Town 4, Brimpton Rovers 1. This was a much better game than the first match, although that's not saying much. Greyston slowed it down and their forwards made the most of the more accurate supplies. John Clayton opened the scoring mid-way through the first half, with Brian Taylor adding a second just before half-time. Lewis Alessandra grabbed an immediate reply, but Clayton, again, and David Norris made it a comfortable win. The scoreline may have been slightly unfair on Rovers, who played their full part in the match, but that, as they say, is football.

Molton United 1, Alsworth 2. Alsworth got their passing game together on this occasion, with John Craven and Barrie Vassallo scoring either side of the interval. John Tedesco pulled one back with five minutes left, and provided a tense finish. Molton will be disappointed, having earned themselves a home replay, but, it has to be said, Jon Sheffield was the busier goalkeeper.

Blundell City 1, Hodwell 0. This one was so enthralling that we were well beyond full-time before the referee even looked at his watch! City got an early lead when Chris Clark played a through pass for Martin Barlow to run onto and score. An excellent game and, not for the first time, fans departed the ground wondering just how this fine side can't lift itself into Division One.

Modified Second Round Draw: Danefield v Blundell City, Reiver Forest v Aberdither United, Alsworth v Blackridge Town, Bullford v Western Villa,
Iveley Park v Mill Athletic, Greyston Town v Highwood Athletic, Melchester Rovers v Hinton United, Mill Town v Eastroke United.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 03 Oct 2016, 11:19

Eastroke Leave it Late

Eastroke United 1, Melchester Rovers 0.

Right from the start, Melchester made several attacks, in an attempt to unsettle Eastroke's w-m passing game, but most of these ended with free kicks to the home side, either for offside or barging. The early onslaught was weathered and the game settled into an and-to-end routine, but with neither defence giving anything away. It wasn't until the latter part of the first half that we witnessed a shot, when Pat Nevin got through on the right, but his shot, on the turn, didn't have the power to trouble Tim Howard. Soon afterwards, a slip by Peter Reid again let in Nevin, but his snap shot this time went wide. These two incidents provided the only goalmouth action of the first half. On this occasion it was an indication of how well both defences were playing.
The second half began brightly, with Eastroke again going down the right, again getting Nevin through, but this time his shot rebounded to safety off the far post.
A long goal kick then caught the home defence napping and Anders Limpar put the ball in the net, but his effort was disallowed for barging the defender. A minute later, he was put through again, but his shot whistled just wide of the far post. The game was finally providing some action.
Howard Kendall was the next midfield provider, when he played a through pass for Tony Cottee to run onto, but his shot also went narrowly wide.
With less than a minute to go, Eastroke put together the best move of the match. A succession of passes started with Stuart McCall, then went Stuart, Nevin, Gabriel, and finally Nevin, who this time slotted the ball passed Howard, for the goal that just about keeps them in touch with the league leaders.

Eastroke Utd. (1 to 11) Hodge; Patterson, Pointon; Gabriel, Lyons, McCall; Nevin, Horne, Pickering, Stuart, Temple.

Melchester Rov. (4-2-4) Howard; Hibbert, Stubbs, Unsworth, Snodin; Kendall, Reid; Limpar, Royle, cottee, Morrissey.

Elsewhere: Western Villa 2,South Barsham 0; Bullford 0,Mill Town 1; Aberdither Utd. 1,Hinton Utd. 0; Hodwell 0,Iveley Park 3.

With Aberdither gaining a seven point lead at the top of Division One, we will be turning our attention to the Division Two promotion race next time, with Dave Blackpool of to report on Flimside against Blackridge Town. Two sides with very different histories, but the same ambition. We hope you will join us.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby Donegal Subbuteo » 04 Oct 2016, 05:35

Great media coverage. I wish I had the patience to write such match reports.
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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 04 Oct 2016, 07:48

Thank you. I wish I had the computing skills that you, and so many others, appear to have.

The technology, is like the league, all so yesterday. Doesn't prevent me finding it great fun, though. Trying to improve on the computer side, although progress is slow, as I find it all so confusing.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby BlackpoolRock » 11 Oct 2016, 16:53

Flimside Extend Unbeaten Run

Flimside 2, Blackridge Town 0.

These two clubs come from very different backgrounds. Blackridge Town are a big club who suffered relegation last season; they are naturally keen to return to Division One. Flimside have come up from the Conference and are in only their second season of league football. It is the hosts, however who come into this game unbeaten in six, putting them on the fringe of the promotion race.

Flimside were the first to threaten, when a Lilian Nalis pass found Calvin Plummer on the right, but his shot went wide. Almost immediately, at the other end, the ball fell to Rory Patterson, but he, too, couldn't find the target. The most imaginative move so far saw Brian Hall produce a cross-field pass to debutant Jim Paterson, who slipped the ball inside to his near namesake and, to be honest, the finish should have been better. Flimside made Town pay for this error, when a through pass from Nalis, was nodded forward by Reuben Reid, for Plummer to run onto and fire home with a first-time strike. There was little the defence could do about that one. Next it was Anthony O'Connor who found himself forward and in receipt of a Nalis pass, but his shot was well blocked. On the brink of half-time Nalis himself tried a cross-come-shot which went right across the goal, skimming the far post.

The second half began with a long period of end-to-end play with defences coping well. The contrasting styles made it interesting to observe, with Flimside going down the middle, and Blackridge playing, as much as they could, down the flanks to their wide players. It looked as though it was going to take something a little fortunate or special to produce another goal, and that is what the the spectators were treated to.

With everyone in front of him marked, Nalis, who else in this game? played the ball to Plummer on his right. The winger ran forward, cutting inside Ray Wilson before turning to face the goal, and his shot went just passed Sylvan Distin's challenge, and beyond George Wood. Solo runs like that don't work too often, but when they do, the result is spectacular.

From then on, Blackridge peppered balls into the area, but the home defence wasn't going to give way. In the last minute, on the counter, a long pass found Tyler Harvey, whose long shot went only inches wide. Had that gone in, the visitors would have been even more convinced that this was simply never destined to be their day.

So Flimside extend their unbeaten run to seven matches and are now right in among the promotion contenders. Could another unfancied team get into the top division? We'll all know by the end of the season. There are six rounds to go.

Flimside (4-3-3) Nicholls; Billy, Barrett, Peddelty, Bhasera; Nalis, O'Connor, Doug Collins; Plummer, Reuben Reid, Tyler Harvey.

Blackridge Town (4-4-2) Wood; Sandy Brown, Andy Nelson, Distin, Wilson; Hall, Trevor Ross, Graveson, Jim Paterson; Gray, Rory Patterson.

Next time, the F.A.Cup, and there are some mouth-watering ties. Dave Blackpool's off to holders Bullford take on Western Villa in a repeat of last season's semi-final. It was decided with two extra-time goals then, what will happen this time? Join us to find out.

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Re: Brookfield Solo League: Season 04.

Postby drsonic » 11 Oct 2016, 19:27

Another quality update. Can't believe Melchester aren't doing better! :)
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