Wrington Redhill Reserves vs Cleeve West Town “A”

Weston and District Division 3

7 April 2015 6:15pm

A deserved third consecutive 2-1 victory strengthened Wrington’s push for promotion, as this time the hosts had to come from behind to secure all three points. Cleeve presented a far tougher test than they had proved during Wrington’s 6-0 demolition earlier in the season, perhaps strengthened by players from their two higher-ranked teams as the end of season mid-week fixtures began in earnest.

Wrington welcomed back James Vowles in goal, who put in a faultless performance characterised by solid handling and some strong kicking. Vowles was well protected by a back three of Chris Holland, Nick Curtis and captain Phil Williams, and the unit would have picked up a deserved clean sheet were it not for an unstoppable free-kick mid-way through the first half. The Cleeve striker had appeared to throw himself to the ground to successfully convince the referee to give the foul, and compounded the hosts’ frustration by stepping up with a pin-point curling effort over the wall and into the top corner.

Until that point the game had been an even affair, with Wrington opting to play up the slope and keeping the ball well on a good surface that the dry weather had afforded some extra bounce. Cleeve were more direct in possession, seeking to hit the channels early, but wing-backs Kyle Selman and Paul Faulkner covered a lot of ground in a disciplined defensive performance.

Midfielder Dan Burnett worked tirelessly throughout the game, repeatedly breaking up play and organising fellow midfielders Mick Edmunds and Joe Moore, who took turns in supporting a front two of James Marshall and Tom Johnson, but were lacking a killer final ball after some good build-up.

Marshall was replaced by Louis Rouvrais at the interval as Wrington looked for a way back into the game. The home side started brightly, playing with high tempo in the evening sun, and never letting their visitors settle. Wrington were dominating the second half possession and territory, and after Moore had headed narrowly wide from a corner, Selman burst down the left wing and fed Edmunds, whose teasing cross/shot evaded everyone and nestled in the far corner of the net for his fifth goal of the campaign.

Ignoring calls from the bench to settle for a draw, Wrington pushed on and for the second time in as many games, clinched the game with a wonderful passing move. Selman won the ball from a goal kick, and played a neat one-two with Moore before feeding the ball inside to Johnson and continuing his run into the box to receive the return pass. Without panicking, Selman looked up to calmly square the ball for the arriving Rouvrais to slam home what was also his fifth of the season.

There was still time for a nervous finish, which regrettably meant that substitute Cozza went unused, after a pinball in the home box ricocheted to the Cleeve striker to provide a glorious opportunity to level at the death. Fortunately for Wrington his shot hit the outside of the post, and thereafter the hosts kept possession of the ball to see out the game.

FULL TIME Wrington 2-1 Cleeve

Wrington: Vowles, Holland, Curtis, Williams (C), Faulkner, Moore, D. Burnett, Edmunds, Selman, Marshall (Rouvrais), Johnson

MOTM: Burnett