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Zamaretto Southern Premier League


Hednesford Town

Wellecomme (2), (63), (79), (87)

(0) 0

(1) 4



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Nick Wellecomme


Swindon Supermarine (A) 9.3.11

It's three in a row for Hednesford this afternoon, as the Pitmen moved within a point of the play-off places with a comprehensive win over mid-table Bashley this afternoon in the New Forest. Nick Wellecomme was the hero of the hour, as he grabbed all four goals to keep the Pitmen on track in the hunt for a top-five finish

On a bright, sunny day in Hampshire, there was an early setback for the Pitmen as their coach broke down en route to Bashley. After arriving after 2 pm, the away side could have been forgiven for not being fully prepared ahead of kick-off. There was one change to the side that had snatched a late win at Stourbridge in midweek, with goal hero Kyle Patterson suspended after his red card at Cambridge. Marvin Robinson, himself facing suspension next week, came in to deputise

Mid-table Bashley came into today's game off the back of a fine run of decent form, having only lost one of their past six games to lift them into tenth place in the table. Manager Steve Riley made three changes to the side that had beaten Oxford City in midweek as Gary Middleton, Tom Hill and Jack Smith came in for Chris Ferrett, Paul Gazzard and Joe Collins

The Pitmen wasted no time in getting started, and with the first attack of the game stole into the lead. A clever through ball from Ross Davidson found Wellecomme racing through the centre, with the striker calmly slotting past the onrushing David Elm in the Bashley goal

After beating Bashley soundly on the same ground last season, Hednesford wasted no time in looking for another goal to add to their tally. On six minutes, Jay Denny tested the reflexes of Elm with a swerving long-range shot that the big keeper held well

Darren Campion was lucky not to go into the referee Colin Lymer's notebook on thirteen minutes as the left-back clashed with Hill, prompting a long and stern lecture from the matchday official for both players

Bashley responded to the Pitmen's bright opening with a good chance on seventeen minutes; Chris Mason sent over a cross from the left that was partially cleared by Cheyenne Dunkley, with Dave Allen striking the ball at the second attempt narrowly past Dan Crane's far post

Robinson was denied a certain goal midway through the first half by Bashley defender Luke Whitley, as the big man looked to get on the end of Wellecomme's cross only to be denied by a last-ditch block from Whitely, who conceded a corner with his stabbed clearance

Hednesford skipper Liam Francis was almost left embarrassed by a miskick on the half-hour mark as he failed to clear Ian Oliver's cross, presenting Tom Hill with a glorious chance to equalise. Hill seemed surprised to receive the ball, and under pressure from Crane only managed to skew the ball wide from just a few yards out

Decio Gomes had to be alert for the Pitmen just before the half time whistle, as an Oliver corner threatened to clear everyone and find the net. The Portuguese defender was well-positioned to head the ball off the line and well clear of danger

After struggling to raise their game in the early stages of the second half of a number of recent games, Hednesford were again slow out of the blocks in the second half as Bashley pushed them back. On fifty minutes, Chris Knowles headed Allen's cross wide of goal with a flick header after getting above Francis in the penalty area

Crane was on hand to make an outstanding double save to keep the Pitmen in the lead five minutes later as Allen's shot was well parried by the Hednesford number one, who followed this up with a breathtaking flying save to deny  Knowles as he looked to tap in the rebound

Bashley were enjoying easily their best spell of the match, and Hill fired narrowly wide of goal on the hour mark after Allen found him with a well-worked corner kick

Manager Rob Smith made an attacking substitution on sixty-two minutes, throwing on the livewire Aaron Gibson for Campion, who was still in danger of picking up a booking 

Hednesford's response to Bashley's dominance was swift and decisive; on sixty-three minutes, Wellecomme made it an uphill battle for the hosts with a carbon copy of his opener to extend the Pitmen's lead. Denny this time played the ball over the top of a static Bashley defence, allowing Wellecomme the time to steady himself and fire past Elm

Smith felt another change was on the cards in defence, giving Ben Bailey a run-out by allowing Cheyenne Dunkley a well-deserved rest on sixty-four minutes. The final change of the afternoon for the Pitmen saw Chris Clements replace loanee Liam Blakeman on seventy-three minutes

Bashley's attacking threat pretty much subsided from this point onwards, as Hednesford dominated the final twenty minutes of play. Wellecomme's movement and Robinson's physical threat were giving the Bashley defence a torrid time, and the strike duo linked up to grab Hednesford's third goal eleven minutes from time

A long, searching ball from Crane was flicked on by Robinson to Wellecomme, who again found himself one-on-one with Elm. After beating Elm twice already in the same scenario, Wellecomme made no mistake in firing into the net to complete his hat-trick

And still, there was time for more as Wellecomme wrapped up a perfect day for him and his team with a fourth goal three minutes from time. As with the first goal, it was Davidson who was the creator, playing a ball in behind a tired-looking Bashley defence for Wellecomme to race onto. The big striker oozed confidence as he bore down on Elm before confidently finding the bottom corner of the net with a low drive

Substitute Collins almost grabbed a consolation goal for Bashley in the final minute of the game, forcing Bailey into a fine block to deny a certain goal. Clements nearly capped a fine cameo with Hednesford's fifth goal in added time but was denied by Middleton's goal-line block after Wellecomme had laid the ball into his path

Win number three in a row has reinvigorated Hednesford's play-off challenge in the last two weeks, as three points today put the Pitmen just a point behind that magical fifth spot. With no game this weekend due to Windsor & Eton's demise, the Pitmen must now wait until next midweek to make the trip to Swindon Supermarine in what will be another stern test to their fine recent form

Bashley: Elm ©, Smith, Oliver, Middleton, Whitley, Knowles (Ferrett 65), T. Hill, Mason, Allen, Gamble, Murray (Collins 65)    Subs Unused:  Brookes, Riley, Prodomo

Hednesford Town: Crane, Gomes, Campion (Gibson 62), Dunkley (Bailey 64), Francis ©, Denny, Melbourne, Robinson, Wellecomme, Blakeman (Clements 73), Davidson       Subs Unused: Keenan, Quinn

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