BROWNE ON THE BALL: It’s 100 not out for Dennis Greene at Boston United

Dennis Greene.
Dennis Greene.

As Michael D’Aguilar blew the full-time whistle at Whaddon Road on Saturday, Dennis Greene had reached his century - 100 not out.

The Pilgrims manager’s landmark game in charge of Boston United ended just as his first match began on March 5, 2013 - with victory over Gloucester City.

Over the course of those contests we’ve seen the manager go about his business in tracksuits, lounge suits, sheepskin coats, shooting jackets, a salmon-coloured V-neck jumper, a tank top and even a fetching club scarf, which even Roberto Mancini would be proud of.

But just as the manager’s wardrobe continues to evolve, so does his squad.

Greene has never been one to shy away from trying something new, whether that’s a centre back in attack, a left back on the wing or - as once happened when his hand was turned - a midfielder in goal.

The same goes for his recruitment policy.

If he feels a player isn’t doing the business, or that he can improve the squad by bringing in a fresh face, then he’ll act. And fast.

Just this season, the likes of Jay Dowie, Matt Gledhill, Jack Barlow, Chris Dickinson and Niall Doran have all learned that their manager can live very much in the moment.

Of course, Greene doesn’t always get things right.

But for every 7-2 stuffing at the hands of Oxford City there are a handful of five-goal thrashings at the Jakemans Stadium.

For every Ashley Timms or Connor Smythe there’s a Ricky Miller, a Dayle Southwell, a Carl Piergianni, a Rene Steer, a Scott Garner or a Zak Mills (and let’s face it, this list could go on and on).

While sentiment and tactics set in stone have been the downfall of plenty of Pilgrims bosses in the past, at least Greene has the guts to gamble.

If you don’t buy a ticket you won’t win the lottery.

Greene may not have hit the jackpot yet, but this season he may be in with a chance of five numbers and the bonus ball.

Saturday’s narrow win saw Greene reach his milestone with a win percentage of 46 per cent (to go along with his 24 draws and 30 defeats) and an average of 1.66 goals per game.

And those victories have included some memorable ticks in the W column against the likes of Barrow, Fylde, Hednesford, Guiseley, Southport, Gainsborough and, perhaps most memorable of all, North Ferriby United at the tail end of last season.

With 100 games played, Greene may not have guided the Pilgrims to the promised land of the Vanarama Premier (just yet), but he’s building some foundations solid enough to stick a Quadrant on top.

And, perhaps most importantly of all, he’s making things entertaining for the fans once again.

After all, isn’t that what you pay your money for?