4.1.2020

BetVictor Southern Premier League Central

Lowestoft Town

Hednesford Town

Glover (16), Abadaki (27)

(0) 0

(2) 2

Attendance

MoTM

Current Form

Next Match

384

Andy Wycherley

L W L W D L W L L W

 

Coalville Town (H) 11.1.20

The Pitmen get back to winning ways this afternoon as they ease to a fine win on their travels at Lowestoft Town, scoring twice in a dominant first half display to claim all three points

A 3-0 defeat to local rivals Tamworth on New Year's Day had seen the Pitmen come out of the Christmas schedule pointless and slipping down the table, still with no permanent manager incoming or players to strengthen the ranks. The interim management team made one change to the side that had started against Tamworth, bringing Izak Reid back into the fold in place of the disappointing Tom Fry. James Hurst was passed fit to line up amongst the substitutes after he had limped off against Rushall on Boxing Day

Lowestoft - the Pitmen's opponents on the opening day of the season - had found the going tough once more this term, sitting down in sixteenth place in the table ahead of today's game.The Trawlerboys had also suffered two defeats over the festive period, losing heavily to both Leiston and Royston Town to make it three games without a win for Jamie Goldbold's team. Golbold made one change to the side that had started against Royston on New Year's Day, dropping Malachi Linton in favour of Marcus Wilkinson as he looked for a reaction to the team's back-to-back defeats

The Crown Meadow pitch resembled something of a potato field in certain areas following a spell of typically inconsistent winter wether in recent days, with both goalmouths covered in sand ahead of kick-off on a cold, chilly afternoon out on the Suffolk coast. An early chance for the Pitmen came from the boot of Elliot Hodge in the second minute of the game, as the winger's cross was headed over the crossbar by Danny Glover

The referee failed to endear himself to the home supporters two minutes later as he waved play on following a coming together between Matt Curley and Jacek Zielonka, despite claims that the Hednesford defender had pulled the Lowestoft man back as the pair chased down a long ball into the Pitmen's penalty area

A corner kick from Hodge led to another contentious issue that went the way of the visitors in the eighth minute of the game, as Reece King's header from Hodge's cross appeared to be diverted away from danger by the arm of Adam Tann. To the amazement of the home side, the referee awarded the Pitmen a penalty kick, despite protests suggesting that the ball had hit the shoulder of the Lowestoft man. Glover stepped up to take the resultant kick, but lifted his shot off the ground and clattered the crossbar with his scuffed effort

A free kick from Hodge three minutes later was whipped in with pace and swerve, prompting Zielonka to head the ball narrowly wide of his far post as he attempted to clear his lines. From the resultant corner kick, King headed onto the crossbar but was penalised for an earlier push inside the penalty area

The Pitmen's bright start to the game brought a reward for their efforts in the sixteenth minute, as a long ball forwards from Andy Wycherley found Osebi Abadaki out on the left wing, with the winger showing great composure to send over a fine cross that Glover did brilliantly to flick a header past Luis Tibbles in the Lowestoft goal and atone for his earlier miss with a poacher's goal for the opener

Wycherley was on hand to deny Jake Reed on twenty minutes, diving down at the feet of the Lowestoft striker to smother his shot after Zielonka had got in down the left hand side and played the ball across to the Lowestoft number nine

Lowestoft continued to press through Louis McIntosh three minutes later, with the striker driving a cross-cum-shot just wide of goal with an angled effort across the face of the Hednesford goal

However, it was the Pitmen that showed more of a killer instinct in front of goal with a second goal of the game on twenty-six minutes; Wycherley's long, raking ball forwards found the head of Glover, who beat Lowestoft skipper Travis Cole and flicked the ball on into the path of Abadaki. The winger let fly with a first-time effort, hammering a shot past Tibbles and into the top corner of the net. A fine strike from one of the Pitmen's stars of the season

There was a swagger to the Pitmen's play throughout the remainder of the first half, as they continued to knock the ball about at will and dictate the tempo of the game. Ben Bailey - out of sorts in recent games - was back to his commanding self alongside Charlie Gatter, playing a delightful sixty yard pass on thirty-three minutes straight into the path of Hodge, whose cross was deflected wide via an effort from Abadaki

From the resultant corner, King's glancing header form twelve yards out was headed off the line by Adam Fisk as the away side continued to look the more likely side to score

With the game drifting into added time at the end of the first half, Wycherley was again on point to deny McIntosh at his near post, smothering a low shot with his legs before the Pitmen cleared their lines

Lowestoft's best chance of the game so far came a few minutes into the second half after Hodge had fouled Reed on the edge of the penalty area, with McIntosh's subsequent free-kick brilliantly turned away by Wycherley for a Lowestoft corner kick

There were slightly optimistic protests from the Pitmen for another penalty kick on fifty-six minutes as a Hodge free-kick bounced around the Lowestoft penalty area before allegedly hitting a Lowestoft hand via a shot from King - the referee seemed unimpressed by the calls and continued with the game

The Pitmen failed to effectively clear their lines on sixty-two minutes, culminating in the ball being played through to Zielonka inside the Hednesford penalty area. The midfielder's low drive was well fielded by Wycherley at his near post, making a good save low down to his right

The away side made their one and only change of the afternoon on seventy-four minutes, with Ethan Jones coming on in place of the tiring Abadaki to play up front alongside Glover

Wycherley was again on hand to clear up for the Pitmen two minutes later, fielding a header from Coles well at his near post after the Lowestoft skipper had headed a corner kick goalwards from twelve yards out

Three minutes later Wycherley was at it again, making a fine save on his goal-line to pluck a shot from Tann out of the air following the midfielder's shot from the edge of the penalty area

Lowestoft's best attempts to get back into the game had come at set-pieces, with another corner kick on eighty-five minutes headed goalwards once more by Coles before being hacked away from goal by King

It had been a fairly uneventful second-half for the Pitmen and their supporters, as Lowestoft showed why they are struggling near the foot of the table with no real cutting edge up front with the damage doen in the first period through Glover and Abadaki. It was a long, but satisfying, trip home for the players and supporters of the Pitmen with a first away win since Leiston under their belts. A return home to the PRG Stadium @ Keys Park in the offing next weekend, as the Pitmen play the first of a home double header next week with a game against play-off rivals Coalville Town before welcoming perhaps the league's surprise package Peterborough Sports the following Tuesday night

Lowestoft Town: Tibbles, Ruffles, Curry, Deeks, Cole ©, Tann , Zielonka, Fisk, Reed, McIntosh (Richardson 84), Wilkinson (N'Buque 71)      Subs Unused: Reynolds, Godbold

Hednesford Town: Wycherley, Curley, Griffiths , Bailey ©, GatterHallahan , Hodge, KingD. Glover, Reid, Abadaki (Jones 74)    Subs Unused: Fry, Hurst, M. Glover, Veiga

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