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Pitching In Southern League 2020/21

Division 1 South

 

Frome Town  1 – 2  Cirencester Town

Match Report by Dave Pyzer

 

 

The Centurions returned to league action with a trip to Frome and after a hard-fought battle managed to return with the 3 points.

 

Over the years The Badgers Hill Stadium has always proved a difficult place to visit and this was no exception as 5th placed Frome Town pressed for all they were worth to the final whistle and The Centurions had to ‘dig-in’ and battle to deny them in a stubborn rear-guard display.     

 

Earlier in the day Manager John Brough lost the services of his strike force – Brad Gray (injury) and Josh Parsons (illness) – and he brought in Aidan Bennet and Levi Irving to replace them. Also taking a place in the starting eleven was mid-week signing Joe Shepherd who was returning to the fold after a 6-year absence (playing for neighbours Swindon Supermarine).

  

As the players were warming-up the promised wind and rain made an appearance and it was the visitors that kicked-off playing towards the Clubhouse and into the weather conditions as they attacked down their left flank to reach the corner.

Shortly afterwards in a positive start to the game they also tried the right flank and were awarded a corner kick but with no end product. 

Following this initial surge from Cirencester the home side mounted a break down their left flank and switched the point of attack to their right channel where the advancing custodian was robbed of the ball resulting in a fierce goal-bound strike at the ‘keeperless Cirencester net being diverted wide of the right post by the outstretched boot of a covering Ellis Dunton for a corner kick.

Five minutes later Cirencester mounted an attack down their left flank as Jordan Morris began a run that took him past a couple of challenges before he released Levi Irving to the left corner where he delivered a pinpoint cross to the edge of the 6-yard box as AIDAN BENNETT arrived to powerfully head into the back of the net.  0-1.

In response Frome pressed forward and Cirencester countered as Bennett slipped the ball through for Jonny Dennis to chase into the home box, left channel, and his resulting shot was pushed wide by ‘keeper Max Evans for a corner kick. 

Almost immediately Frome launched the ball down their left channel for Kane Simpson to chase and win near the left front corner of the Cirencester box where he sent a low cross that ROBERT HOBBS smashed inside the left post from a central position just outside of the penalty area.  1-1.     

Back came Cirencester as Joe Turley sent the ball left from the centre of the pitch to Irving and he exchanged passes with Bennett en-route to the left corner and a cross that was blocked for a corner kick that was cleared and recycled – Dennis to Turley and forward to Nick Hancock who crossed from the left by-line through the front edge of the 6-yard box and out the other side for a throw to Frome.

A couple of attacks from each side and then Joe O’Loughlin collected the ball in his left back position and began a run that took him down the left channel to the centre circle where he slipped the ball to his right and continued his run - popping-up on the right flank to collect the ball and dart down the right side edge of the Cirencester box. As he cut into the box he was brought down and a Penalty Kick awarded.  After some delay as he gathered his thoughts O’Loughlin took the spot kick himself with ‘keeper Alex Harris diving to his right to parry the effort and Shayne Anson quickest to the rebound to concede a corner kick.

In the lead-up to the interval the action became frantic with neither side able to retain the ball for long.

Half Time:  1-1

The home side came out of the blocks very quickly as they attacked their visitors but when the opportunity arose Cirencester countered down their flanks as Morris sent a low cross from the left corner to the edge of the 6-yard box where it was cleared just as Hancock arrived.

Once again the ‘end-to-end’ football returned as several Frome players exchanged quick passes as they worked the ball to the right corner – defended for a counter to the left corner.

As the mid-point of the half approached it was Cirencester that made the vital break-through as a Frome attack was stopped and the ball played up to Dennis, on to a charging Joe Shepherd who carried it to the left corner where he delivered a low cross into the mix, between 6-yard box and penalty spot, that was hastily cleared to a lurking JONNY DENNIS and he wasted no time in smashing it inside the left post from the edge of the box.  1-2.

A few minutes later Frome worked the ball from right to left – drawing Harris from his goal-mouth – and laid it back for a cross towards the far-right post where James Ollis headed wide of the left post.

With nothing to lose Frome were increasing the pressure with their ‘quick passing’ approach play but Cirencester were refusing to be drawn and stood firm whilst mounting swift counter attacks of their own. 

Jonny Dennis popped-up on the right flank and reached the by-line before crossing to Bennett at the far post but his header back across goal was cleared.

When Frome pressed down their right flank and Martin Lenihan crossed towards the far post Harris punched it clear and Tommy Anderson collected to embark on a 40-yard run down the right channel to relieve the pressure but Frome were soon back again and it was desperate defending as Cirencester repelled wave after wave of attacks with further runs to the left corner from Dennis and Morris giving them time to catch their breath.

Full Time:   1-2

After a good opening to the match that led to a well-worked goal, end-to-end play, an equaliser and a penalty kick it was all-square at the interval.

Cirencester regained the lead and hung-on despite immense pressure from Frome to collect the points but credit must go to the entire squad who worked hard to redeem themselves after last week’s FA Trophy defeat.

  

Attendance:  325                                            Referee:   Carl Peters   

 

FROME TOWN:

 1.   Max Evans
 2.   Jack Witcombe
 3.   Joseph O’Loughlin
14.   Warren Maidment
19.   Alex Hallett
 4.   Samuel Teale     ©
16.   Rex Mannings
 8.   Robert Hobbs                                            22
 9.   Kane Simpson
 6.  Christopher Peck
17.  Alexander Monks 

10.  Jake Jackson        
13.  James Carey
18.  James Ollis                                    (Christopher Peck-69mins)
15.  Martin Lenihan                               (Alex Hallett-69mins)
  

CIRENCESTER TOWN:

1.   Alex Harris
2.   Tom Handley
3.   Jordan Morris
4.   Joe Turley
5.   Shayne Anson
6.   Ellis Dunton
7.   Nick Hancock
8.   Joe Shepherd
9.   Levi Irving
10.  John Dennis                                               65
11.  Aidan Bennett                                             11

12.  Ross Gabriel                                  (Levi Irving-69mins)    
14.  Tommy Anderson                           (Nick Hancock-78mins)
15.  Josh Nelmes
16.  Michael Pook                                  (Aidan Bennett-78mins)                                        
17.  James Mortimer-Jones

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