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Evo-Stik League Southern Premier Division

Cirencester Town 1 – 0  Burnham

Match Report by Dave Pyzer

The final match of the league season brought Burnham, who have had a difficult campaign with relegation from the Premier Division already confirmed, to the Corinium Stadium.

The Cirencester starting eleven was unchanged from the match last week against Hungerford with Aidan Bennett once again at left back despite the number on his shirt (No. 10) and Jordan Ricketts up front even though his shirt number was 3.

The home side kicked off in perfect conditions playing towards the Shed end of the ground and immediately took the game to their opponents as within two minutes Jordan Ricketts played a ball down the centre towards Josh Parsons but the ball bounced too high on the very firm pitch enabling visiting ‘keeper Aaron Watkins to collect near the penalty spot.

Five minutes later a long throw from Ian Herring on the right flank reached the front edge of the 6 yard box where Nat Jarvis was just unable to get a clean header as he was under pressure from the visitors defence. 

The striker was in the action shortly afterwards when he received a pass - with his back to goal 30 yards out down the centre – turned and fired in a surprise, powerful shot that Watkins parried before collecting.

The ‘keeper was being peppered with crosses into his area and when Aidan Bennett sent a deep cross from the left flank towards the back post he was once again called upon to parry the ball wide of goal as Jarvis closed in.

With 18 minutes on the clock Burnham nearly caught the home defence out as a long throw from the right flank found Carl Davies bursting forward, between Mark Pritchett and Gethin Jones, in the right channel just outside the penalty area and as the ball dropped into his path he took the shot early but it cleared the bar.

Two minutes later an attempted Burnham cross-field pass, from left to right, was read by Bennett and he intercepted it 10 yards outside his penalty area and, encouraged by the Management, he promptly galloped down the flank for some 65 yards before laying it off to a supporting Brad Hooper in the centre, 25 yards out, who struck a right footed shot that just cleared the cross-bar.    

The fullback was involved again a few minutes later as he slipped the ball to James Mortimer-Jones in the left channel and he moved it on to Parsons, on the centre front edge of the area, who turned and shot in one move but his effort was blocked.

Cirencester were putting their visitors under increasing pressure and a throw from Herring to Ricketts was returned and the fullback played a low ball from the right corner towards the near post where surprisingly Mark Pritchett popped up as he darted forward to strike it into the side netting with his right foot.

Just before the half hour mark the Management Team decided to play with three at the back to enable Bennett to push forward more and this decision nearly proved successful as Parsons played a pass inside the defender for Bennett to collect and drive to the bye-line before crossing through the 6 yard box towards Ricketts at the back post but the forward was just unable to reach it.    

Within a few minutes Herring played a ball inside to Mortimer-Jones and he slipped it through to Hooper, on the burst down the right channel, and as the ball bounced up in front of him Hooper struck a right footed volley just wide of the right post.

With seven minutes of the half remaining Burnham were awarded a free kick 5 yards outside the home penalty area, slightly left of centre, that Adam Dickens lined up and struck towards the top left corner of the goal but Glyn Garner had read his intention and moved to his right before leaping up to touch it over the bar for a corner kick that was cleared.

Two minutes before the scheduled interval Garner took a free kick, just inside the visitors half – right channel, and sent it to Jones further down the channel in the penalty area and he controlled it before crossing toward the near post where Ricketts dashed forward to meet it but his effort was just wide of the post.

Half Time:   0 - 0

The Centurions started the second half in positive fashion and within minutes Bennett made a run down the left and crossed the ball into centre of the 6 yard box where Jarvis headed over the bar.

Ten minutes into the half Matt Liddiard laid the ball back to Bennett who chipped it forward towards the corner where some confusion in the visitors defence led to a left wing corner kick. When the kick came into the box there was a couple of attempts at goal in the crowded goal mouth that were blocked but the ball eventually landed at Herring’s feet, near the penalty spot, and he calmly slipped it to the right for JOSH PARSONS to strike, right footed. His effort was partially blocked but it had enough on it to enter the net just inside the right post to finally break the deadlock.  1-0.

Just before the mid-point of the half Burnham had a moment of excitement when a throw-in from the right flank taken by Lewis Fogarty bounced up and struck the outside of the right post.

A couple of minutes later Cirencester were reduced to ten men as Ian Herring was dismissed for a strong challenge on the right flank.

With less than ten minutes remaining Mortimer-Jones exchanged passes with Ben Wells on the right flank and this took ‘Jonah’ into unusual territory in the offensive right corner where he rode a couple of tackles to take the ball to the bye-line before pulling it back for a well placed Danny Gudger (making his League debut) in the right channel of the area to snatch at his strike for the ball to be cleared.

Burnham were still dangerous on the break and with 8 minutes left of normal time a ball down their right found Fergus Burton and his low cross into the 6 yard box had to be watched carefully and put behind for a corner kick that Garner eventually caught after a couple of headers from the visitors around the front edge of the 6 yard box. 

The pace of Gudger was causing the Burnham defence some problems and when Parsons slipped the ball in behind their defensive line the Development Team player accelerated into the space, right channel of the area, and took the shot on without pausing but it cleared the crossbar.

To emphasise that the game was not yet won the visitors mounted another attack down the right channel as Burton latched on to a loose ball and attempted a lob that from the front of the penalty area that had Garner back peddling but to the ‘keepers relief it cleared the bar.

The action quickly moved to the other end of the pitch as Parsons drove into the left corner before slipping the ball forward for Ollie Knight to chase, collect and cross from the bye-line through the box to the far side of the area where Gudger was charging forward but in his eagerness he struck a fierce shot over the target.

The final attempt at goal came from Burnham in time-added-on as Jeff Brown ambitiously struck a left footed half volley from 10 yards inside his half that bounced just over the Centurions goal.      

Final Score: 1 - 0

The home side had plenty of possession, creating a number of good opportunities especially towards the end of the game, but found their opponents in determined mood. 

The three points for this victory resulted in the Centurions finishing in 8th place in what has been a terrific season on their return to the Premier Division.

WELL DONE to everyone involved.

Attendance: 112                        .        

Referee:      Daniel Leach



1.   Glyn Garner
2.   Ian Herring                                   YC-68mins                               
3.   Jordan Ricketts
4.   Mark Pritchett          (C)              
5.   Matt Liddiard           
6.   Gethin Jones                     
7.   Brad Hooper             
8.   James Mortimer-Jones
9.   Nat Jarvis                         
10.  Aidan Bennett                                       YC-60mins                      
11.  Josh Parsons            56mins                 

12.  Jacob Davidge                                                          
14.  Ollie Knight                (Jordan Ricketts-64mins)
15.  Ben Wells                   (Nat Jarvis-76mins)
16.  Kyle Pitts
17.  Danny Gudger            (Brad Hooper-64mins)              



1.    Aaron Watkins                            
2.   Victor Ocansey                  
3.   Shaun Downes 
4.   Adam Goldie                                          
5.   Jeff Brown                                 
6.   Richard Jeffries                  
7.   Ollie Emsden                      
8.   Lewis Fogarty    
9.   Carl Davies      (C)
10.  Adam Dickens          
11.  Conrad Joseph

12.  Gareth Risbringer       (Shaun Downes-61mins)
14.  Andy Forisky                      
15.  Fergus Burton           (Conrad Joseph-61mins

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