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22 Jan 2011 SLP Halesowen Town 0-3 Bedford Town PDF Print E-mail

Zamaretto League Premier Division – Saturday, 22nd January 2011

Halesowen Town 0 Bedford Town 3

Halesowen’s lively opening spell was undone by a brace from Bedford’s Ian Draycott, writes David Johnson.  Shaun Cunnington took control of team affairs after the previous day’s departure of Tony Thorpe but entered the relegation six-pointer without on-trial Ruben Izquierdo and Alex Roofe took over in central defence, replacing Daventry-bound Chris Godwin.

In a bright start for the Yeltz, Justin Nisbett flashed a shot wide in the 2nd minute and Nisbett then played the ball out to Lee Chilton, but his 6th minute shot was beaten away for a corner by Bedford goalkeeper Ian Brown. As Bedford settled, full-back Graham Clark did well to shoot from the right with home goalkeeper Simon Flower turning the ball away for a corner.

Nisbett made another fine run down the left as Halesowen forced three quick-fire corners midway through the first-half. A well-worked move from one of the corners saw a neat combination between Chilton and Sam Wills with central defender Mark Smith’s effort just wide. In the 29th minute Rory Curtis’ good work allowed him to cross from the left and the loose ball fell invitingly for Wills to strike a fierce goal-bound drive but the visiting defence blocked. Nisbett then cut inside after 35 minutes but his shot was again blocked.

But it all went wrong with Halesowen’s early endeavour undone late in the first half when Clark whipped in a cross from the right for Ian DRAYCOTT to head home unchallenged and give the Eagles a 38th minute lead.

At the start of the second period, skipper Michael McGrath struck a 25-yard shot inches wide and Curtis hit another attempt straight at goalkeeper Brown. But Bedford were in no mood to loosen their grip and doubled their lead five minutes after the interval when ex-Yeltz central defender Gavin Hoyte headed on a right wing corner for Emmanuel RICHARDSON to touch home from close range. Hoyte’s 63rd minute header hit the underside of the bar but any decision on whether the ball had crossed the line was avoided as the offside flag was raised.

Halesowen went close to replying with a fine flowing 67th minute move initiated by Keenan Meakin-Richards playing a long ball out to Chilton on the left-wing. Nisbett met Chilton’s cross with a glancing header but Brown reacted well and just managed to cling onto the ball under his crossbar. Chilton displayed his pace again to strike the ball across the face of goal in the 70th minute.

Richardson should have increased Bedford’s lead after finding himself clear on goal after playing a neat one-two in the 74th minute but Flower made a fine save.

But Bedford put the game beyond doubt when Ian DRAYCOTT struck a superb curling shot into the top corner from 20 yards to make it 3-0 in the 77th minute. However, the on-form striker squandered a golden opportunity to complete his hat-trick and compound Halesowen’s misery when he ballooned a 79th minute penalty high over the bar, following a push in the area.

With four minutes remaining Brown raced out of goal to slide the ball clear with his legs from Chilton but Halesowen were left without a win since November as their fellow strugglers Bedford took all three points to ease away from the relegation zone.

Halesowen Town: Flower; Davies, Robinson, Roofe, Smith, McGrath (c), Wills, Meakin-Richards, Nisbett, Curtis, Chilton. Unused Subs: Sowe, Jarrett, Yousif.

Bedford Town: Brown; Clark (P. Draycott 83), Lawley, Lewis, Stupple (c), Hoyte, Richardson, Cole, Ivy, I. Draycott (Peacock 87), Ducket. Unused Subs: Wall, Hall, Sozzo.

Referee: M. Dexter (Leicester)

Attendance: 164

Booked: Robinson (90), Cole (90)

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