13.11.2010

Zamaretto Southern Premier League

Hednesford Town

Brown (44) (penalty), Robinson (64), Clements (73)

Cirencester Town

Wood (40) (penalty)

(1) 3

(1) 1

Attendance

MoTM

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Simon Brown

D W D W D L W L W W

Stourbridge (H) 16.11.10

Hednesford's play-off credentials continued to enhance this afternoon, as the Pitmen swept aside newly-promoted Cirencester with a strong second-half performance at Keys Park this afternoon

New signing Danny Quinn was rewarded for his late winner against Tiverton last week, with the striker making his full debut for the club alongside Marvin Robinson. Ashley Woolliscroft made a return to the club in midweek on loan from AFC Telford United and slotted in at right-back in place of Ben Bailey

Cirencester - promoted to step three through the play-offs last season - had made a reasonable start to the season and sat twelfth in the league at the start of play; a fine 4-1 win over Oxford City last week saw manager Brian Hughes make one change to today's side as the experienced Chris Thompson replaced Matt Walsh

The Keys Park pitch had suffered in recent weeks due to the plunging temperatures and a number of games played, with a bobbly, tough pitch awaiting the teams at kick-off. This made any attractive football a no-no, as both sides started with a direct route towards goal

Seven minutes into the game, target man Robinson made a dart through the Cirencester defence as he looked to get on the end of a Chris Clements through ball. However, an early offside flag halted the former Derby County striker's progress

Seven minutes later, the new striker partnership almost came up with an opener for the hosts as they looked to get on top of the game; Quinn picked up a Gavin Hurren pass before slipping the ball through to Robinson, but the big number nine just failed to connect with the ball as Cirencester keeper Matt Bulman rushed out to smother the ball

The away side seemed content to soak up the Pitmen's pressure and looked to break swiftly themselves, with James Mortimer-Jones and Sean Wood pulling the strings in midfield. At the other end, Cheyenne Dunkley had to be alert to cut out a ball from Jody Bevan that was aimed towards striker Marcus Palmer

Dunkley was guilty of gifting the Centurions a chance on the half-hour mark, fouling Palmer and allowing Tom Etheridge to float in a dangerous free-kick that Liam Francis just about dealt with

After a slow build-up, the game finally sparked into life on thirty-seven minutes - Darren Campion's run down the left saw the full-back send over a brilliant cross that found Quinn lurking at the far post, with the young striker powering a header against the post

The miss was to prove costly for the Pitmen, as they switched off at the back and conceded a penalty from the resultant counter-attack. Campion fouled Carl Brown wide on the Cirencester right, giving away a free-kick that Mortimer-Jones played into the area. Bevan and Dunkley clashed inside the six-yard box, with the referee awarding Cirencester a penalty for Dunkley's over-enthusiastic challenge on the Ciren man. Wood stepped up to fire a powerful penalty past Dan Crane, with the aid of the post, to give the visitors the lead 

Robinson squandered a real opportunity to level matters only sixty seconds later, somehow sliding the ball wide from close range when it looked easier to score

The referee 'evened up' the penalty count just before half time, as the Pitmen's pressure earned them a spot-kick of their own. Brown tried to take advantage of a slip from Matt Sysum in the Cirencester defence, with the defender only succeeding in bringing the Hednesford man down. On closer reflection, there was very little, if any contact between the players, but this mattered little to Brown, who stepped up and fired home the penalty to send the Pitmen in on level terms

Half time saw a change in personnel for manager Rob Smith, with Jamey Osborne replaced by Jay Denny in the centre of midfield

The second half continued in much the same vein for the opening exchanges, with both sides opting for the more route one tactic. Cirencester went close on fifty-three minutes with Palmer beating Francis to a header, but his effort was narrowly wide of Crane's left-hand post

Robinson had been a handful for the Cirencester centre backs all afternoon, and another powerful, bulldozing run on the hour mark saw him shrug off a challenge and fire a yard over the bar from twelve yards out

Hednesford's physical presence made an impact on the scoreline four minutes later, as Robinson finally got the goal his efforts deserved. Brown's darting run down the right saw him deliver a brilliant cross towards Robinson, who met the ball with a firm header that beat Bulman from close range

Almost immediately, Smith took the opportunity to remove the hard-working Quinn from the firing line, bringing on Kyle Patterson for a little more cunning and know-how

Indeed, on seventy-three minutes, Patterson was involved in the brilliant third goal that clinched all three points for the Pitmen; he picked the ball up from Denny, before rolling his man and playing the ball back into the path of Clements. The midfielder played a one-two with Brown, before clipping the ball over the head of Bulman with a delightful lob from the edge of the area - a superb individual effort, but a well-worked team goal in the build-up

Patterson almost made it four on seventy-eight minutes but fired wide from a narrow angle after another well-worked move by the home side

To b fair to Cirencester, they continued to plug away in the final minutes as they looked for a goal to get back into the game. Palmer went closest to reducing the deficit on eight four minutes, as his mazy run saw him beat two Hednesford players, but fired across goal and wide of the far post

A regulation win for the Pitmen, who move up into the top five of the league table although they are already ten points adrift of runaway league leaders Truro City after only two and a half months of the season gone already. The Pitmen are playing host again in midweek as they welcome local rivals Stourbridge to Keys Park, who sit only three places below them in the league table

Hednesford Town: Crane, Wooliscroft, Campion, Dunkley, Francis ©, Hurren, Brown, Clements, Robinson, Quinn (Patterson 64), Osborne (Denny 45)       Subs Unused: Gibson, Bailey, Carter

Cirencester Town: Bulman, Sysum, Etheridge, Henry, Wood ©, Thompson, Reid (Walsh 74), Mortimer-James, Bevan, Brown (Hoskins 81), Palmer      Subs Unused: Tomkins, Jack, Westlake

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