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Two Late Goals Deny Battling Cirencester Town

Manager Brian Hughes made two changes to the side that started against St Albans with Neil Arndale fit again he replaced Andy Gunn and Jody Bevan came into the side at the expense of Mike Tambling.

Once again Town started brightly with a long throw by Tom Etheridge causing problems in the Stourbridge area and goalkeeper Lewis Solly only punching to the edge of the box. Jamie Reid latched onto it and struck but couldn’t find the pace to beat Solly, who recovered to make a comfortable save.

Only two minutes later a ball over the top caught Town out and Ryan Rowe broke through but Matt Sysum produced a great recovery tackle to stop Rowe in his tracks and avert the danger.

On 14 minutes, an up and under strike from Bevan almost caught Solly out in the wind but he caught the ball well under the bar at the back post. A few minutes later it was Solly who caught Bevan out when he landed on the Veteran striker while claiming a cross. This mean’t the last piece of action for Bevan who had to go off injured with only 25 minutes on the clock with Mike Tambling replacing him.

Paul Banks who once again was working tirelessly forced Solly into a good save and then Matt Sysum was booked for a challenge on the busy Solly. Stourbridge hit back and broke through the Town rearguard to force Town goalkeeper Danny Greaves into a good one v one save and in the final minute of the half Aaron Griffiths blazed a free kick over the Town bar.

The second half saw Andy Gunn replace Matt Sysum who had to be withdrawn with an inury picked up in the first half. Only five minutes were on the clock in the second half when great work by David Stone near the byeline saw him drive a ball across goal which hit the Stourbridge left back Leon Broadhurst and bundled over the line to put Town 1-0 up.

Town nearly went 2-0 up when James Mortimer-Jones saw his free kick deflected with Solly producing an unorthodox save with his legs and Stone failed to hit the target with his follow up shot.

Stourbridge managed to work an opening after a good piece of play by Ryan Rowe saw him receive a return pass and fire just wide of goal. At the other end more trickery in the final third by Stone saw him play the overlapping Richard Mansell in and he got off a pile-driver across Lewis Solly who produced a wonderful save full length down low to his left turning the ball aside.

Going into the last twenty minutes Stourbridge started to put pressure on the Town defence and it took a great piece of defending from Andy Gunn with a crucial tackle in the Town penalty area to keep Stourbridge at bay. Then Tom Etheridge was forced to concede both a foul and a booking to stop Stourbridge breaking away after foiling a Town attack.

It was Stourbridge who scored the next goal with a brilliant cross in from the right which evaded everybody except for the dangerous Ryan Rowe who converted with a header at the back post to make it 1-1 in the 77th minute.

The Town forward line tried to push for the winner with Banks and Tambling in particular giving everything they had to shut down and chase and make life awkward for the Stourbridge defence. However, in a cruel twist it was to be Stourbridge who snatched the winner with just three minutes remaining. A long punt from deep into the Town penalty area saw Greaves come out to punch the ball clear but in a challenge similar to Diego Maradona against England all those years ago Linden Dovey managed to block Greaves' punch with his arm and saw the ball carry into the empty Town net leaving the Town back four furious with the referee.

Cirencester Town although extremely disappointed with the result can take a lot of heart for the efforts they put into a good display against a Stourbridge side who will be there or there abouts come the end of the season. The side certainly deserved something from the game and will be looking to get some points on the table in the next game against Oxford City.

There were good performances from Neil Arndale, Paul Banks and Jamie Reid and Mike Tambling when he came on. However, the Four Pillars Hotel Man of the Match, voted on by the supporters, was awarded to Jamie Reid.

Cirencester Town:

Danny Greaves, Neil Arndale, Ricahrd Mansell, Zak Westlake, Jamie Reid, Matt Sysum (Andy Gunn 45), Tom Etheridge, James Mortimer-Jones, Jody Bevan (Mike Tambling 25), David Stone (Will Loughman 80), Paul Banks
Subs not used: Ellis Dunton, Adam Mayo,  


Lewis Solly, Sam Rock, Aaron Griffiths, Paul McCone, Sean Geddes, Nathan Bennett, Paul Lloyd, Leon Broadhurst, Ryan Rowe, James Dyson (C), Josh Craddock
Subs: Lindon Dovey, Craig Slater, Sam Smith, Drew Canavan, Ben Billingham, Gary Hackett 

Referee: Kevin Morris

Attendance: 120


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