By James Brown:
Nantwich Town continued their fine Evo-Stik Premier Division form with a 2-1 win over Hednesford Town on Tuesday evening at The Weaver Stadium thanks to a brace from the returning Craig Lindfield.
The Dabbers got off to a perfect start after controlling the opening exchanges, as pressure on the Hednesford goal resulted in a corner picking out Sean Cooke on the edge of the box who lofted a ball forward into Lindfield who beat the offside trap to volley home and give Nantwich a tenth minute lead.
Just before the half hour mark Hednesford were level when a slip from Dabbers captain Joel Stair allowed Dan Sweeney to race through on goal and finish past Fabian Spiess into the bottom left corner.
What turned out to be the winner came four minutes after the break following some patient Nantwich build-up play as James Lawrie spotted the run of Troy Bourne who delivered a low cross into the six-yard box for Lindfield to steer home his second of the night.
A second half defensive masterclass saw the Dabbers see out the game to earn a second win in four days and go six games unbeaten in the league.
Similar to Saturday’s victory against Farsley Celtic, the Dabbers started on the front foot with Jamie Morgan and Joe Mwasile terrorising the Hednesford full backs. The bright start paid off when a training ground corner routine found it’s way to Cooke who, instead of shooting, chipped a ball over the Hednesford defence into Lindfield who had beaten the high line before volleying past Sheridon Martinez.
The Hednesford shot-stopper almost gifted Nantwich a second on 15 minutes when his poor throw went straight to the feet of Cooke however he managed to recover just in time to deny Lawrie which was a big let off for the visitors. The Pitmen’s first sight of goal came two minutes later when a ball in from Lewis Archer found Sweeney just outside of the six-yard box but his header was into the arms of Spiess.
Hednesford grew into the game as the half wore on and had a couple of chances from free-kicks taken by Joe Fitzpatrick, the second of which from dead centre was fired on target however Spiess made a comfortable save. The Dabbers keeper could do nothing in the 29th minute when a mistake from Stair allowed Sweeney to run in on goal and finish confidently into the bottom corner.
Four minutes after the break Nantwich were deservedly back in front following some excellent football as Lawrie picked up possession on the edge of the box before playing in Bourne on the right wing who whipped in a low cross which was met by Lindfield who got in front of a defender to finish past Martinez.
Following some fantastic Dabbers defending to keep the dangerous Archer away from goal, it could have been three after a lovely ball from Lindfield played Morgan down the left who drove into the box before drilling a cross towards Joe Malkin however a touch from Hednesford full back Sam Griffiths took it just over the bar.
The Pitmen’s best chances to find an equaliser were from set-pieces with the tall Stefan Galinski and Griffiths flicking headers wide of the mark.
Inside the final 15 minutes, Nantwich looked to kill the game off when Malkin picked up the ball in the Hednesford half and spotted the run of Mwasile however his pass was just too heavy for the winger who would have been in one-on-one with Martinez.
Martinez was on hand to make a quick reaction save with ten minutes to go when Pitmen skipper Galinski sliced a cross with pace towards his own net as the Dabbers looked threatening on the counter with the visitors committing men forward. The keeper, who’d had a rough night, was keeping the game alive with another good stop moments later following some great play from Cooke to beat a couple of defenders before setting up substitute Callum Saunders who was denied not once, but twice.
Heading into the last five minutes, the game became really stretched as both sides were having chances on goal, with substitutes Dan Cockerline and Charley Edge both going close before Galinski made an important clearance to prevent a Cooke free-kick from finding a Nantwich player.
Some more last ditch defending from Hednesford denied Saunders once more in added time however the Dabbers closed out the game for a second successive win to go six unbeaten and up to sixth in the league table.
Nantwich will now hit the road as they look to continue their winning run against Mickleover Sports on Saturday afternoon (3pm kick-off).
Nantwich Town: Fabian Spiess, Troy Bourne, Jamie Morgan, Joel Stair (c), Toby Mullarkey, Matt Bell, Joe Mwasile (Jake Phillips 86’), James Lawrie, Joe Malkin, Sean Cooke, Craig Lindfield (Callum Saunders 67’)
Subs not used: James Hawkins (GK), Steve Jones, Aaron Knight
Hednesford Town: Sheridon Martinez, Callam Mendez-Jones, Sam Griffiths, Joe Fitzpatrick, Stefan Galinski (c), Reece King (Charley Edge 68’), Matt Curley (Dan Cockerline 59’), Callum Coyle, Lewis Archer (Mike Howard 59’), Dan Sweeney, Nathan Fox
Subs not used: Jose Veiga (GK), Jermain Hollis
Referee: Daniel Hitchell
Photos courtesy of Mark Welton and Jonathan White« Back to all news