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Zamaretto Southern Premier League

Hednesford Town

Patterson (66), Wellecomme (89)

Tiverton Town

(0) 2

(0) 0



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Liam Francis


Banbury United (H) 15.3.11

Hednesford's push for a play-off place continued to gather pace this afternoon as the Pitmen wore down Tiverton's dogged resistance with two second-half goals to seal win number five in a row

Having been on such a good run of form, it was little surprise that Hednesford manager Rob Smith stuck with the same side that had beaten Swindon Supermarine late on in midweek for today's return to Keys Park, including the same faces amongst the substitutes plus the available-again Aaron Gibson

Tiverton, who have had a wretched season near the foot of the table, made the long journey up to Keys Park in the midst of a dreadful run of form that had left the yellows second bottom of the league table. Defeat at Hemel Hempstead Town left Tiverton without a win in their last five games, prompting player/manager Mark Saunders to make two changes to today's starting XI as Alex Faux and debutant Jules Emati-Emati came in for Adam Mortimer and Joe Bushin respectively


The away side made a superb start to the game as they looked for a crucial three points in their quest to stay up again this season; a flowing move in the very first minute saw Ian Sampson fire in an angled shot, only to be denied by a block from Cheyenne Dunkley - who turned the ball away for a corner kick

Skipper Liam Francis continued his recent outstanding form on six minutes, turning away a shot from Jules Emati-Emati after Ryan Leonard had laid the ball into the path of the Tiverton man. the ball rebounded kindly to Sampson, but his shot was wide of goal

The Pitmen recovered from their stuttering first ten minutes to respond in form, with Ross Davidson firing narrowly wide of goal on fifteen minutes after Kyle Patterson found time and space out wide to supply a great cross after a slip from Tivvy's Liam Ellis

Nick Wellecomme was next to test Tiverton's resistance, running clear of the Tiverton defence after hesitation in the backline saw Darren Campion's ball find the big striker. His well-hit shot was well saved by keeper Ryan Draper, who turned the ball away from goal smartly

Tiverton responded, and a shot from David Steele on twenty minutes appeared to strike the hand of Cheyenne Dunkley en route to goal. The referee saw the incident as accidental however and the game continued

Darren Campion's powerful free-kick midway through the half was only just off target, which was won after Emati-Emati had fouled Francis just outside the penalty area

A number of niggly fouls saw players of both sides go into the book, with Jay Denny particularly lucky to stay on the pitch after two late challenges on Leonard. The former Halesowen man had to compose himself before carrying on after a stern lecture from the referee on the second occasion, with a booking a fair result from the first challenge

Emati-Emati should have given Tiverton the lead on thirty-five minutes, heading over the bar from only six yards out. Michael Nardiello was guilty of the same crime just two minutes later, heading Sampson's cross two yards over the crossbar

Tiverton finished the half much the stronger, with Leonard missing with a relative sitter with just a minute to go in the half as he headed a free-kick wide of goal from only a few yards out

Half time saw a change in fortunes for the Pitmen, who had probably been second best for the majority of the first half. They started the second half much more aggressively, forcing Tiverton onto the back foot

Alex Melbourne tested Draper's reflexes just a minute into the restart, firing in a low shot that the Tiverton keeper did well to hold at the second attempt

Patterson, who had had a quiet game to this point, considering his outstanding recent form, was guilty of missing an absolute sitter on fifty-one minutes, as striker partner Wellecomme did brilliantly to force his way through before laying the ball into Patterson's path. However, with the goal gaping, Patterson somehow managed to fire well over the bar from a couple of yards out when it looked easier to score

Hednesford committed more men forward at every opportunity for set-pieces, and a mass scramble in the penalty area from a Campion corner saw Francis, Patterson and Dunkley all have a swing at the ball, but some last-ditch defending saw Tiverton hack the ball off the line and away

Wellecomme's play earned the Pitmen a corner kick on sixty-six minutes, jinking inside and crossing towards Patterson, only for more panicky defending to just do enough to get the ball away


The resultant corner kick found its way out to Darren Campion, whose deep cross beat Draper and dropped onto the head of the grateful Patterson with the in-form striker heading home from two yards out

Smith took the opportunity to make changes at this point, with Kyle Haynes and Danny Quinn both introduced in place of Chris Clements and Patterson respectively

Quinn almost scored with his first touch on seventy-five minutes, sliding the ball wide from Davidson's ball. Tiverton's response saw Emati-Emati exchange passes with Sampson before forcing Crane into a fine save low down to his right

This was the start of a period of pressure for Tiverton, as three corners in a row caused confusion in the ranks. Francis hooked one ball off the line, whilst Leonard's final corner of the three somehow missed everyone as it flashed across goal

With just a couple of minutes remaining, Campion's game was ended prematurely as he clashed with Tom Gardner out on the left. After several minutes of treatment, the left-back was stretchered off to generous applause from the Keys Park crowd

In the first minute of added time, the Pitmen wrapped up the game, as Tiverton substitute Russell Jee panicked on the ball and allowed Wellecomme to dispossess him and fire past an exposed Draper from eight yards out

A hard-fought victory for the home side, but one that is of massive benefit to them, as results elsewhere saw the Pitmen move closer to the top three. Next up - another crucial home game, this time against relegation-threatened Banbury United, and another chance to tighten up the gap between themselves and the three sides above them in the Zamaretto Premier League table

Hednesford Town: Crane, Gomes, Campion (Keenan 87), Dunkley, Francis © , Denny , Melbourne, Patterson (Quinn 83), Wellecomme, Clements (Haynes 73), Davidson       Sub Unused: Gibson, Bailey

Tiverton Town: Draper, Ellis, Faux (Jee 90), Hill, Martin (Turner 82), Gardner ©, Sampson, Leonard, Nardiello, Emati-Emati, Steele (Saunders 86)      Sub Unused: Mortimer

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