April 2003
Just got back from Oz and what better way to spend the first full day back in the UK than to go to the Mad Stad to watch the Mighty Hoops. It's the last home game of the seasonMegan Mad Stad.JPG (80070 bytes) and one point is needed to secure a playoff place. Over 20,000 turn up meaning that this season Reading have an average gate of 16,000,  their highest ever since joining the football league around 85 years ago. A win today and Reading will also achieve their most ever wins in a season. Reading v Grimsby.JPG (95175 bytes)

A further milestone is achieved as Megan (Ali's niece) attends her first ever Reading game at the age of 8 months. Unfortunately she bursts into tears after 90 seconds when Reading score and Mum (Mo) throws her up in the air in celebration. After 20 minutes Luke Chadwick sets up the second goal and Reading are on the way to an easy win. 

With all the playoff places secured Reading have a week to wait to find out who they will play over two legs on 10th and 14th May. Most likely opponents are Wolves or Nottingham Forest, Sheffield United being the other team. The winner plays in the final at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff for a place in the Premiership. Watch out Chelsea, Liverpool and Man Utd. 

May 2003
PLAY-OFF TIME. Not too confident but whatever happens Reading have done superb to get there as at the beginning of the season avoiding relegation was the only target. So Reading v Wolves is the big one in the Cratch household on Saturday 10th, although Chelsea v Liverpool for the final Champions League spot is a very close second (depending on who you talk to).

PS. The grass is growing; got up this morning; cleaned my teeth; had a dump; went to work; came home; drank; ate; Man Utd won the Premiership; yawn; went to bed.

1 Portsmouth 46 52 98
2 Leicester City 46 33 92
3 Sheff Utd 46 20 80
4 Reading 46 15 79
5 Wolves 46 37 76
6 Nottm Forest 46 32 74