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Pitching In League Challenge Cup

Second Round


Yate Town 1 - 2  Cirencester Town


Match report by Dave Pyzer


In their second League Challenge Cup fixture of the season Cirencester once again faced Premier Division opponents – this time it was former regular adversaries YATE TOWN and after a well-matched encounter The Centurions came away from Lodge Road with a narrow 2-1 victory to proceed to the next round.  


Following their hard-fought defeat to National League South side Hungerford Town in The FA Cup at the week-end Manager John Brough took the opportunity to give some of the squad a rest whilst providing others returning from injury the opportunity to test their fitness and get some game time.


For once the conditions were ideal for football as it was a cool, dry evening and this encouraged the free-flowing football that was a feature of the match as the home side kicked off and almost immediately lost the ball enabling Cirencester to attack down their left flank through Levi Irving.

During these early stages the left flank was particularly busy for Cirencester as Tom Handley and Irving were combining to good effect and when they fed Whitehead he rounded the ‘keeper to fire towards the open goal but Liam Angell managed to get back to block the shot near the goal line to concede a corner kick.

Around 18 minutes it was Yate’s turn to threaten as Sam Turl charged down the left flank before slipping the ball to Josh Allen who saw his shot from the left front corner of the Cirencester box deflected to ‘keeper Alex Harris but two minutes later he was back again, with the same outcome as Jake Lee made the block, near the right channel front edge of the area.    

At the mid-point of the half Cirencester opened the scoring following a fierce Whitehead shot from the left channel of the home box that ‘keeper Callum Brain parried but before he could pick it up Aidan Bennett pounced to take the ball wide to the left by-line where he made a sharp turn to clip it to the back post. A supporting Ross Gabriel competed in a heading duel for the ball and it fell invitingly for BEN WHITEHEAD to force over the line from a few yards.  0-1.   

A few minutes later Mike Pook took a quick free kick to send Bennett to the right corner where his cross was parried by Callum Brain and collected by Whitehead followed by a sharp turn and shot that was deflected over the bar for a corner kick that led to a counter attack as Ricardo Rees made ground down the centre before slipping it to Allen who shot straight at Harris.

As the half hour approached Turl galloped to the left corner to release Owen Brain who cut-right and shot from the edge of the box – forcing Harris to push it over his cross-bar.

Cirencester responded to win a couple of corner kicks from the left that produced blocks and a counter attack as Max Williams carried the ball some 50 yards down the centre before sending the ball out to the right-side edge of the Cirencester penalty area where a low cross was delivered into the box for OWEN BRAIN to collect, right channel – 15 yards out, and fire a low shot across the goal and inside the far-left post.  1-1.

Back came Cirencester to win a series of corner kicks without adding to their solitary goal.

In the final minutes of the half Stuart Fleetwood supplied Owen Brain who shot straight at Harris and Williams made another strong run down the right channel before shooting, with his effort being pushed around his right post by Harris, and the resultant corner kick was eventually fired over the bar.

There was still time for Cirencester to work the ball across the home box to Elliott Keightley, on the right flank, who crossed for Whitehead’s shot to be blocked.     

Half Time:   1-1

After the interval it was more of the ‘press and counter’ football although it was the home side that opened strongly and 11 minutes in Harris had to dive forward to cut out a low cross on the edge of his 6-yard box after Rees had been released to the right corner.

As the hour mark approached Ellis Dunton headed the ball forward to Gabriel who had his shot blocked but recycled to Irving in the left corner leading to a corner kick that was eventually returned to Irving and resulted in a corner kick on the other flank.

When Cirencester attacked down their left flank again the ball was lost for Mark Thuo to combine with Fleetwood and Williams as they worked their right flank for Rees to fire over the bar.

By the mid-point of the half it was end-to-end football with ‘press and counter’ the name of the game as Dunton, Gabriel and Whitehead combined, then Whitehead chased back to release Bennett who crossed to the back post for Shepherd to head into the mix – free kick to the home side for a foul.

It was then the turn of Yate to press as they sent a cross-field pass from left to right to Andy Lewis who sent it to the centre front edge of the visitor’s box where Rees volleyed over the bar.

A few minutes later Ollie Mehew charged 40 yards down the centre to be brought to a halt by a well-timed tackle from Lee who supplied Bennett in the left channel of the area but his resulting shot was blocked.

As the game entered the final scheduled ten minutes Dunton once again headed clear from within his own half to reach Gabriel who headed on for AIDAN BENNETT to collect and drive forward into the home penalty area and as Callum Brain advanced he calmly tucked the ball under the ‘keeper and inside the right post to regain the lead for Cirencester.  1-2.  

Immediately Yate responded as a Lewis effort cleared the bar and Cirencester worked the ball to the left corner for a corner kick that Joe Turley delivered into the mix for Nick Peare to head goal-wards, headed out to Whitehead – header blocked falling to Peare who sent his volley over the bar.   

There was still time for Yate to send a free kick into the Cirencester box where Rees effort was pushed over his bar by Harris and the resulting corner kicks defended.

Full Time:   1-2

An entertaining cup tie, played at a good pace throughout, with lots of end-to-end play.


Attendance:     123                                                       Referee:   Sam Fudge


Yate Town:

 1.        Callum Brain
 2.        Mark Thuo
 3.        Sam Turl
 4.        Max Williams
 5.        Liam Angell
 6.        Andy Lewis
 7.        Owen Brain                                       33
 8.        Joshua Allen
 9.        James Harding
10.        Stuart Fleetwood     ©
11.        Ricardo Rees 

12.        William Tunnicliff                    (Sam Turl-46mins)       
14.        Joseph Tumelty                      (Joshua Allen-79mins)
15.        Liam Jones
16.        Oliver Mehew                         (Owen Brain-72mins)                           
17.        Andrew Hannah   (GK)


Cirencester Town: 

 1.        Alex Harris
 2.        Elliott Keightley
 3.        Tom Handley
 4.        Michael Pook
 5.        Jake Lee
 6.        Ellis Dunton
 7.        Aidan Bennett                                      81
 8.        Nick Peare
 9.        Ross Gabriel
10.        Ben Whitehead                                   23
11.        Levi Irving 

12.        Joe Turley                               (Michael Pook-72mins)
14.        Josh Nelmes                           (Jake Lee-84mins)
15.        Joe Shepherd                          (Levi Irving-61mins)
16.        Josh Parsons                                       
17.        Kevin Sawyer   (GK)

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