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20 Sept 2008 SLP Chippenham Town 2-1 Halesowen Town PDF Print E-mail

British Gas Business Football League - Premier Division – Saturday, 20th September 2008

Chippenham Town 2 Halesowen Town 1

Chippenham gained revenge for last season’s play-off semi-final defeat at Halesowen as substitute Luke Gullick hit an early brace.  The Southern League finally bowed to club pressure and the game was played with new replacement Mitre footballs but was soon over as a contest as the Bluebirds raced into a two-goal lead.

Jason Wood limped off with ankle ligament damage after falling awkwardly in the first minute to be replaced by Bluebirds substitute and two-goal hero Gullick. GULLICK opened his account in the 5th minute by volleying first time over young goalkeeper James Russell after Sam Allison hopefully hoofed the ball forward in a poor start for Halesowen. Cortez Belle’s header was then scrambled away from an 8th minute corner as Chippenham played up the slope and found the visiting defence unsettled.

Halesowen’s best chance of the first-half fell in the 13th minute when Jermaine Palmer’s glancing  header from Darren Caskey’s free-kick was grabbed low down by goalkeeper Chris Snoddy. Snoddy then collected crosses from Daryl Taylor and Alex Cowley in the following minute.

Out-of-sorts Halesowen fell 2-0 behind in the 22nd minute when Kye Holly did well to cross from the right for unchallenged GULLICK to head home at the far post into the opposite corner. On the half hour Taylor’s fierce shot was blocked for a corner to the visitors but central defender Belle – previously targeted by Halesowen – continued to keep the Bluebirds firm at the back. By contrast, Halesowen’s defence was torn apart again on 34 minutes when a neat interchange saw Curtis Ujah outpaced as Dave Pratt put Gullick in the clear, but Russell saved his first effort and Tom Bryant then cleared as Gullick hit the rebound across the face of goal. Uncomfortable Ujah was replaced after 39 minutes with Halesowen re-jigging their defensive formation. But with the Bluebirds in control, Pratt broke free after a slip by Cowley but could only fire weakly at Russell after 40 minutes and Kevin Halliday struck a free-kick straight at Russell a minute before half-time.

Mark Danks was introduced at the interval and the second half was more of an even contest with the Yeltz forcing two early corners and Tom Kemp looping the ball towards goal after Snoddy missed a 49th minute free-kick. At the other end, Russell grabbed Holly’s free-kick and Pratt crossed for Gullick to volley over the bar in search of his hat-trick after 55 minutes. Halliday then headed high and Bryant did well to clear another Gullick effort on the hour.

Aaron Cornwall – returning to his former club - was brought down on the edge of the Chippenham area in the 66th minute but Caskey’s effort was blocked. Halesowen pulled a goal back in the 70th minute when Cowley played the ball into the area and a clever step-over from substitute Zema Abbey left PALMER in space to calmly slot past Snoddy. However, the visitors were unable to make much further impression and left Hardenhuish Park empty-handed.

Immediately after the game, a simmering dispute between manager Morell Maison and his out-of-favour striker Dean Brennan reached a climax with Brennan left the worse for wear.

Chippenham Town: Snoddy; Adams, Halliday, Williams, Belle, Harvey, Lye, Holly, Pratt, Allison (Seavill 74), Wood (Gullick 3). Unused Subs: Gardner, Richards.

Halesowen Town: Russell; Cowley, Bryant, Kemp, Ujah (Allward 39), Denny, Taylor (Danks 45), Caskey, Rowe (Abbey 68), Palmer, Cornwall. Unused Subs: Brennan, Hummell.

Referee: T. Lawrence (Bridgewater)

Attendance: 491

Booked: Harvey (20), Cornwall (67), Belle (70), Palmer (70), Caskey (89)

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