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Zamaretto Southern Premier League


Hednesford Town

Barnett (7), (90), Durrell (58), Bailey (90)

(0) 0

(1) 4



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Tyrone Barnett


Halesowen Town (A) 7.11.09

Hednesford's F.A. Trophy hangover was swept aside in remarkable fashion this afternoon, as the Pitmen ended Bashley's long-held unbeaten home record with a clinical attacking display


 Simon Line immediately plunged new signing Luke Horrocks into the fray after he joined the Pitmen on a month's loan from Northwich Victoria yesterday. Fellow new signing Luke Chapman had to be content with a place on the bench. There was a late change to Line's original line-up, with skipper Richard Walker missing out due to injury leading to Grant Goodhead returning to the side after being cup-tied against Buxton. Long-serving forward Ross Dyer was given the honour of captaining his hometown team in Walker's absence

Bashley's long and proud home record had now lasted for eleven months, with Steve Riley's side flying high in the league table in second place, just three points behind leaders Farnborough. They had made progress in the F.A. Trophy last week with a 4-1 win at Beaconsfield SYOB, with Riley making just the one change for today's league game as Dave Allen replaced Pete Castle in midfield

On a bright, crisp day in the New Forest, Hednesford set about their task of cracking the top ten, taking advantage of other teams above them who were involved in the F.A. Cup. The Pitmen's swift attacking play seemed to catch the 'Bash' defence out, and they took the lead on seven minutes through joint top scorer Tyrone Barnett. Horrocks did well out on the left, teasing his marker before crossing for Barnett, whose scuffed shot did enough to put Bashley keeper David Elm off his stride and bobble into the corner of the net

The Pitmen continued to have the better of the play, with Goodhead and Bailey snuffing out any threat posed by the Bashley attack. Indeed, the only time that the home side managed to get past the young defensive duo in the opening quarter was a free-kick awarded just outside the area that Bashley's Ryan Hill took, forcing Gavin Ward into a fine save to turn the ball over for a corner kick

Bashley were seeing more of the ball at this point in the game, as they tried to force a mistake from Hednesford's youthful back four. There were appeals for a penalty on fifteen minutes when Bailey and Adam Kelly tangled in the area, but the referee seemed unconcerned and waved play on

Despite the pitch being pretty bumpy, both sides were looking to play the ball on the ground, which suited the Pitmen's approach play. Zak Martin was linking well with Horrocks down the left, whilst Sean Platt and Elliott Durrell were winning plenty of the ball on the opposite side. Horrocks again supplied Barnett  with a good chance on twenty minutes, whipping in a well-flighted ball that Barnett headed goalwards, only for Elm to turn the ball away for a corner

Back came the hosts, who went close to equalising through former Dorchester man Justin Keeler just before the mid-way mark. Picking up the ball just inside the area, his low shot beat Ward, but hit the base of the right-hand post and came back into play, where it was cleared

Bashley were to hit the woodwork again five minutes later when Dave Allen's harmless-looking header looped over Ward's head before bouncing off the crossbar and onto the roof of the net

The Pitmen remained a threat on the counter, with Durrell coming into the game more and more as the contest went on. His lay-off to Sam Aiston saw the former Sunderland man wriggle his way past two players and unleash a venomous shot from twenty yards out that missed Elm's right-hand post by a matter of inches

Dyer and Barnett continued to give Bashley nightmares at the back with their movement and pace, with the two linking up on the edge if the area ten minutes before the break, but Dyer's attempted shot was blocked by Bashley skipper Matt Parnell

There were more shouts for a spot-kick from the Bashley players and supporters as half time approached, with Kelly again claiming to have been fouled just inside the area. Again, there was no reaction from the referee, who carried on with the game

The Pitmen had impressed, but with only a goal's advantage at the break, they were living dangerously. The first ten minutes of the second half saw Bashley emit serious pressure on Hednesford's defence, winning numerous corners and generally winning all of the fifty/fifty challenges. Keeler went close for 'Bash' on fifty-one minutes, firing inches over after Kelly had played him in, although Ward seemed to have the shot covered

Bailey saved the Pitmen's bacon three minutes later, just managing to do enough to put Mark Gamble off after the Bashley man picked up Allen's ball in and shaped to shoot inside the six-yard box; Bailey's presence just did enough to deny him time and space to pick his spot, with Gamble hitting his shot inches wide of the right-hand post

Keeler came within the width of the post of drawing Bashley level on fifty-five minutes, heading Charlie Knight's cross against the post, with Ward this time a beaten man

The away side's response to Bashley's pressure could not have been better timed, as they moved further in front just before the hour mark. Barnett and Parnell had a coming together just on the edge of the area, with the referee awarding the Pitmen a free-kick, despite protests from Parnell and his team mates. Durrell took the kick, firing through the Bashley wall and through the flailing arms of Elm, who failed to get down to the ball in time

Bashley's attacking threat seemed to subside almost immediately, as Hednesford dominated the final half-hour. Dyer was played through by Aiston, in an almost carbon copy of Dyer's goal at Didcot, but Elm atoned for his error by coming out and making a fine save when it looked odds on that Dyer would join his strike partners on the scoresheet

Barnett and Durrell combined in a quick breakaway on seventy-six minutes, with Barnett denied by Elm after Durrell's through ball had played Barnett in behind the static Bashley defence

For the home side,  a close-range effort from Knight that was easily fielded by Ward was the only real chance they could muster as the Hednesford defence stood firm. It was protected further with the introduction of the under-rated Scott Lycett with ten minutes to go, who replaced the tiring Horrocks

Dyer was left holding his head with eight minutes to go, as he leapt highest to get to Durrell's corner kick, but headed wide of the post

It was left to Bailey to finally calm any remaining nerves amongst the Hednesford supporters, who had once again turned out in force to support their team, as the centre back notched his fourth goal of the season in the final minute of the game. Durrell's corner dropped to the onrushing Bailey, who had the simple task of firing home from ten yards out as he arrived unmarked

And still there was more, as with almost the last kick of the game, Barnett added a fourth goal. After rescuing a deep cross that Elm had flapped at, Barnett calmly brought the ball under control, turned and lobbed the ball over the Bashley keeper and into the top corner of the net at the far post - a classy goal, and the icing on the cake for the Pitmen to complete the scoring an ensure a happy journey home for the Hednesford supporters

Line's regime still has a lot of work to do as it continues to ease its way into the club, but there is a solid base to build from at Keys Park, and if some of the talented individuals at the club can be nurtured further, Line can look forward to more days out like this one. Due to their early exit from the F.A. Trophy, Line's men have a free weekend next week before they make the short trip down to Halesowen Town the following Saturday

Bashley: Elm, Hill, Ferrett (Gazzard 77), Middleton, Parnell ©, Knowles, Kelly, Mason (McCarthy 67), Allen (Castle 67), Gamble, Keeler, Knight       Subs Unused: Prodomo, Tarr, Riley


Hednesford Town: Ward, Platt, Martin, Jagielka, Bailey, Goodhead, Durrell, Aiston, Barnett, Dyer, Horrocks (Lycett 80)      Subs Unused: Gibson, Chapman, Overton, Flynn

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