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Evo-Stik League Southern Premier Division

CirencesterTown 1 - 0 Redditch United

The wind and pitch were the only winners at the Corinium Stadium in the first half on Saturday spoiling any chance of any good football.

Cirencester started the better of the two sides playing up the slope into the wind and had their only two shots of the half inside the first 6 minutes.

Firstly James Mortimer-Jones drove a free kick over the bar and then only a few minutes later Lee Smith making his debut on loan from Worcester City cut in from the right and hit a left footed shot straight at Redditch goalkeeper Dean Coleman who couldn’t hold onto it but his defence cleared the danger.

On a heavy pitch with the wind swirling, both teams struggled to get the ball down and play and build up any momentum and it mean’t a scrappy affair that both sets of fans were to witness. It also certainly wasn’t helped by some strange decisions from referee Andrew Newell, particularly when Nathan Davies was booked after a challenge on him and was also then held down by Joseph Halsall.

Redditch had only one attempt on goal, that coming a few minutes before half time when a looping shot caused young Development team debutant Mike Hedges no real problems as he caught it comfortably.

Just after the restart Lee Smith again cut in from the right and curled a shot to the far post which Dean Coleman went full length to his right to turn away for the first corner of the game.

On 59 minutes Wayne Turk, making his debut after signing from Forest Green Rovers in midweek, hit a rasping shot just wide of the post as Cirencester got on top of the game.

Redditch who had shown limited attacking options did get in at the far post on 67 minutes but Thomas Berwick’s shot was beaten away confidently by Hedges in the Cirencester goal. As the clock started to run down it looked like Cirencester would be denied the three points they so needed until an unlikely scorer popped up with a dramatic winner.

On 86 minutes Zak Westlake made a great intercepting tackle midway inside the Cirencester half and broke away. Westlake surged into the Redditch half and went straight towards the heart of the Redditch back four before showing composure to slot a pass through to Wayne Turk. His shot curled inside the far top corner to spark jubilant scenes from the players, staff and supporters of Cirencester Town as they went 1-0 up.

Then it was the turn of 18 year old goalkeeper Mike Hedges to prove a real match-winner on his full debut. On 88 minutes after a ricochet in the box the ball broke to a Redditch forward but Hedges charged from his line and got a hand to the shot and enough of a touch to take the ball wide of the goal for a corner. He then bettered that save in the last minute of the game when a great pass was played inside left back Ellis Dunton for Jake Jones to run onto. Jones cut inside and was now just inside the area but Hedges flew out and spread himself to make a great blocking save and deny Redditch an equaliser.

For the last two minutes of time added on Cirencester’s experienced players managed to hold the ball up in the corner and seal an excellent and much deserved victory and most importantly a vital three points.

Attendance – 123

Referee – Andrew Newell

Cirencester Town:

1 Mike Hedges
2 Scott Claridge
3 Ellis Dunton (Booked)
4 Andy Gunn
5 Nathan Davies (Booked)
6 Zak Westlake
7 Wayne Turk
8 James Mortimer-Jones (C)
9 Lee Smith
10 Scott Griffin
11 Jon Else

12 Jamie Dunn
14 Mitchell Bryant (on for Griffin 75 mins)
15 Lawrence Prior (on for Else 75 mins)
16 Steven Ruck

Redditch United:

1 Dean Coleman
2 Aaron Stringfellow
3 Tesfa Robinson (C)
4 Jack Cresswell
5 Gavin Caines
6 Jamie Grimes
7 James Travis
8 Joseph Halsall
9 James Deabill
10 Thomas Berwick
11 Jake Jones

12 Lee Osborne
14 Aaron Moses-Garvey
15 Kyle Knott
16 Daniel Cresswell
21 Jake Bedford

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