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November

1 December

   

Erith Town1 Windsor 2 (Report by Rob Stevens Royal Borough Observer Sports Reporter)
Windsor won at Erith in round two of the national competition last season, but manager Mick Woodham admitted his side needed to improve in certain areas to once again beat their hosts from the Southern Counties East League Premier Division.

Erith made a bright start with right winger Steadman Callender having the best of the clear chances early on, but it was Windsor that broke the deadlock through all-time leading scorer Robert Lazarczuk on 35 minutes.

Andrew Ingram was picked out on the right wing with a long pass forward and the striker maintained possession before finding Lazarczuk, who took a touch before firing low past keeper Adam Molloy from a central possession on the edge of the box.

Windsor doubled their advantage on the hour mark as substitute Matthew Stockill picked out Daniel Roberts with a smart pass and the forward burst into the box before unleashing a powerful left-foot shot beyond Molloy at his near post and into the top corner.

To their credit, Erith did not let their heads dropped and pulled a goal back through Callender in the 64th minute. The visitors failed to clear their lines and, despite keeper Hugo Sobte making a save at his near post, the Erith winger was able to turn the ball home inside the six-yard box.

The home side threw everything at Windsor in the final 15 minutes but the visitors, marshalled by Joe Crook and Luke Appleton in central defence, stood firm and could have added to their own tally late on with George Gould going close.

Erith’s frustrations showed in the fifth minute of time added on when captain Jack Hooper was shown a straight red card for a knee-high tackle on Roberts just outside the home penalty box.

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Bluefin Sport Challenge Cup

Abingdon United 0 Ascot United 4 (away view)
Patient Ascot United scored four unanswered second half goals to oust Abingdon United and ease into the Bluefin Sport Challenge Cup Quarter Final. The Yellamen were totally dominant in the first half, creating and wasting a hatful of chances, but Abingdon would survive an Ascot penalty, disallowed goal and rattled woodwork to escape with half poised at nil-nil.

Louis Bouwers’ sixth minute header was chalked off for a push before he struck the crossbar three minutes later with a shot from Jonny Denton’s corner, and as Ascot stretched their hosts, both Nathan Minhas and Jean-Claude Etienne also saw chances go begging as both failed to get their feet right. Minhas then had a shot blocked at the near post, but Ascot were given their best opportunity when Bouwers was pushed in the box, only for Minhas to smack the crossbar with a rising effort from the resultant penalty; 29 minutes played.

Abingdon were wasteful from two Calum Harvey free-kicks which sailed over, although their best chance came midway through the half when defender Jason Smith’s stooping header missed by a couple of feet from Ryan Jackson’s corner; Jackson himself winning the set-piece off George Lock’s interception. Etienne volleyed over from the edge of the area and home ‘keeper Jake Pritchard did extremely well to thwart Minhas on the stroke of half time as normal service was resumed, but Ascot couldn’t forge an opening.

The second half was a different story as Ascot scored four fine goals, the first of which arrived on the 50-minute mark. Elliot Carey – making his first start for the Yellamen – won back possession just outside the penalty area, played a neat one-two with Lock, and cut the ball back from his advanced position for Etienne to take one touch and rifle past Pritchard.

Lock would turn provider again when he went past one defender only to be thwarted by a second, although when the ball came back into the box, Laflin made no mistake with a left-footed shot which went in at the near post. Debutant Lamin Sankoh’s introduction came with a slide-rule pass for Minhas to run onto, and although Minhas left himself with the tightest of angles after rounding Pritchard, he somehow poked the ball home from the by-line when faced with a target little wider than the ball itself; 70 minutes played.

At the other end, Lee Allen tipped over substitute Kyle Moss’s effort and Patrick Bloxford fired over in a late goalmouth scramble, but Ascot had the last laugh when Denton’s low right footed shot found the bottom left hand corner after Lock had inevitably turned provider once again by playing him in.
Ascot United: Allen, Lock, Haworth, Carey (Sankoh), Bouwers, Ellis, Denton, Laflin (Kassim), Minhas (Kibaki), Price, JC Etienne. Subs unused: F Etienne, Sullivan

Bluefin Sport Supplementary Cup

Didcot Town Development 3 Chinnor 2
Didcot progressed to the second round of the Bluefin Sport Supplementary Cup against Chinnor at GWR Loop Meadow Stadium on a remarkably good pitch after some heavy rain earlier in the day. The home team gifted Chinnor two goals which bookended the match but in between played some fine football.

Jack Hollister fired the first chance of the match past the post and only a minute later a misdirected home header allowed Ben Morgan to head home the opening goal for Chinnor. On 16 minutes James Tanner shot home the equaliser from the edge of the box which gave Chinnor keeper Ben Taunton no chance.As the half progressed some good lead up work by Didcot could not be finished off as successive chances went over the bar or just past the post.

Didcot stepped it up in the second half as first Keiran Collins shot past however the second home goal was only delayed as Caelen Isaac stepped forward and his raking pass down the wing found Jack Hollister who powered past a defender and his fierce cross was hammered in to the roof of the net by Ross MacDonald first time. A great team goal enjoyed by the home crowd.

Three minutes later and Keiran Davis for Didcot fired low past the post when through one on one with the keeper. MacDonald turned provider as he collected a lovely through ball from Keiran Collins and fired a cross in to the box which was met by a Hollister first time who shot past Vaughan for the third home goal.

Didcot largely controlled the second half and substitute Daryl Harris shot wide however just as the game was petering out in the 89th minute another defensive header caught the home keeper out and a melee of bodies stretching for the ball ended up with the ball in the net, the goal being charitably credited to Richard Jewell for Chinnor. Once again good Didcot performances from youngsters Harry Hudson and Harry Moreton and also good to see James Barnett returning from a prolonged illness.

Tuffley Rovers 3 Bourton Rovers 1
After the Hellenic League had seen a flurry of midweek matches postponed, the Supplementary Cup tie between Bourton Rovers and their hosts at Glevum Park only went ahead after a morning inspection, with both teams warming up on the grassy area behind the north goal in order to protect the playing-surface on the main pitch from any further damage.

The blue Rovers arrived in Gloucester as the team in form, having dropped only three points from their opening eight fixtures in the Hellenic League Division Two (West). For the hosts it was a different matter altogether. Having won only one of their opening dozen competitive matches of the season the claret-and-blue Rovers then had three wins in a row, before starting another dreadful run of nine winless matches heading into this cup-tie. Player-manager Mark Pritchett picked a strong starting eleven and was able to name returning striker Shayne Bradley as one of his substitutes. Only thirty-four goals scored in twenty-four matches justified the decision to welcome Bradley back into the first-team fold at Tuffley but the statistics at the other end prove where the real damage was happening with fifty-three goals having been conceded in those two dozen games.

The early exchanges were fairly even but the hosts had a shock before ten minutes had been played when they conceded the opening goal. A quick passing move between Sam Tyack, Keegan Bowes and Harry Larner saw Bowes fire in a shot which Kane Winman, scrambling to his left, could only half-save. Jack Galpin was on hand to push the loose ball into an empty net with nine minutes on the clock. As Tuffley tried to restore parity a cross from debutant Rhys Davies on the left was easily held at his near post by visiting ‘keeper Simon Flower. But the next cross from the same side was more profitable with Lee Smith rising to firmly head the ball past Flower’s right-hand side. Only a few minutes later the recovery was complete. Paul Carter’s early corners from the right had been floated deep towards the far post. But he took the next corner short and exchanged passes with Henry Birkett before swinging the ball over. It fell to Mark Pritchett on the left and his pass was thumped gleefully into goal by Jack Phillips, who recorded a first ever Rovers goal in the process.

Pritchett needed lengthy treatment after coming off the worst in a strong 50/50 challenge near halfway but was able to continue, then shortly after Dominik Kent shot over the Bourton crossbar following a quickly-taken free-kick, and Phillips also hit a shot from distance over the bar as the first half came to a close.

The players of both teams had lined up for the second half a good three minutes before the match-officials emerged from the dressing-rooms to resume play. There were two early scrambles in the Bourton goalmouth with the first of those leading to claims that the ball had crossed the line, as Macaulay Herbert directed the ball towards goal.
Carter was left hobbling after being kicked and would soon be substituted by Kieran Alder, who immediately added some much required energy into the hosts’ performance. Dominik Kent found space on the left but his clever chip clipped the crossbar and bounced away, leaving Bourton very much in the game. Although Tuffley were seeing more of the ball Bourton had willing runners who would break up play and move into the Tuffley half and one such strong run by Josh Fielding on the right was ended by a perfectly-timed tackle from Brad Loveridge, who had been recalled in the right-back position. That intervention was the pre-cursor to a moment of quality that ultimately took the tie in Rovers’ favour.

As play moved down to the other end Henry Birkett made a strong, diagonal run from right to left, rode a couple of challenges then stopped and chipped a delightful right-foot shot away from Flower’s left side and into the inside of the Bourton net. Before play re-started after this sumptuous goal Bradley came on for Kent. Bourton brought on Mitch Thompson and Kevin Goodwill from their substitutes’ bench as their need for more attacking opportunities became an imperative, while Tuffley made their final change by introducing Sam Hill for Davies. As the clock ticked down the game continued to be quite open and the visitors certainly did themselves proud against opponents from a higher level in the football pyramid, but it was Tuffley who made progress in a competition which saw them reach its final two seasons ago and winning for the first time since early October ought to give the home players a big boost as they continue with a run of six games in a row during December.

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Holmer Green 1 Fairford Town 2 (away view)
A wonderstrike from his own half by Ben Snook just three minutes before time secured Fairford Town a valuable away win at Holmer Green on Saturday.

The game went ahead after a morning pitch inspection, and the win saw the Reds move above the hosts on goal difference.

Fairford were looking to get back to winning ways after a 1-0 defeat at Lydney Town seven days ago, and after a goalless first half, Robbie James struck the opener with a thunderbolt on 47 minutes to put Jody Bevan’s men in front.

The hosts got themselves back on par with Jamie Britnell hammering home from close range after a corner had not been cleared.

It was then left to Snook to seal the deal from inside his own half with a memorable goal, lofting the ball over the stranded Holmer Green ‘keeper and into the empty net.

The win lifted the Gloucestershire up to ninth in the table ahead of Tuesday's visit of Frampton in the GFA Trophy.

Fairford Town: Harrison Ellis; Martin Hall (Watson ’76), Joe Thomas, Nathan Hawkins, Troy Weaven; Dan Bailey, Callum Preece (capt) (Beardsell ’68), Robbie James, Ben Snook; Danny Gudger, John Thomas (Lodge ’82) Substitutes not used: C Bailey, Oakes

One East

Burnham 5 Woodley United 1 (away view)
Despite the score line against the free scoring league leaders Burnham, United produced one of their best performances of the season and could count themselves unlucky to be two goals behind at half time with both having an element of offside in them!

Both teams were positive in wanting to get the ball into their opponents half from the kick off with Adam Barnard seeing his goal bound shot blocked on the edge of the penalty area in the second minute and Leon Mannion failing to hit the target from close range after a good low pass from Pablo Fernandez from the left wing four minutes later to shortly afterwards to be followed by Fernandez shooting wide.

Tom Bryant, who enjoyed a good game, was forced into a corner from Dan Molloy’s shot in the tenth minute which from play saw Ollie Harris’ cross ago across the face of the United goal to safety. Barnard had a long range shot comfortably gathered by Burnham keeper Sam Bunting who also comfortable caught Mannion’s header in the fourteenth minute from a corner while Jon Malone went narrowly wide form distance.

With Burnham dangerous on both flanks they got the breakthrough in the nineteenth minute when on a break Harris open the scoring. Mannion saw Bunting parry for a corner while Bryant stopped shots from Malloy and Dean Allen twice. Freddie Barrow shot wide while a good break by Ed Thomas and pass to Fernandez saw the visitors force another corner. But with a minute to half time Burnham again broke with pace and Allen doubled the lead.

The second half started as the first with United positive and enjoying possession in the hosts’ half but a cross saw Bryant do well to parry Aiden Higgs’ header and Higgs react quickest to prod the ball into the net eight minutes after the restart. United changed there formation by introducing Max Laschok but went further behind in the fifty eight minute when Bryant pushed Higgs for a corner and from the resultant kick Burnham won a penalty that Allen converted.

Woodley continued to be positive with Laschok dangerous but saw Burnham complete their scoring in the sixty fourth minute when Harris’s shot took a wicked deflection to go past a stranded Bryant. Fernandez put a free kick wide in the sixty ninth minute and shortly afterwards Bunting saved well from Laschok and Fernandez before Edwards got a goal Woodley deserved in the eighty sixth minute while Toby Briggs was denied with a block in the goal area late into stoppage time.

 

 
 
 
 
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