Adderbury Park 5-4 Highworth Town
By Mike Markham
A game of two halves!
The Reserves travelled away to Adderbury Park and although on a good run of form, knew that this was going to be a tough test.
The home side started brightly and it only took them three minutes to get the lead, after poor marking from a corner allowed a free header from only 4 yards out, Jonah Beer made a decent block on the line only for the home side to bundle in the rebound for 1-0.
Things soon got worse for the visitors when again an Adderbury set piece was headed in from close range for 2-0.
With only 20 minutes on the clock it was soon 3-0 as keeper Randlesome spilled a weak Adderbury shot and the rebound was fired home.
The Ressies has not really started but after Cam Lagan was put through on goal after 38 minutes he was crudely brought down by the advancing keeper, and Jordan Clark made no mistake from the spot 3-1.
Hopes of being back in the game we’re short lived for the Reserves as only minutes later a long clearance ended up with the Adderbury forward coolly chipping Simon Randlesome in the Highworth goal as he found himself in no man’s land!
Half time 4-1.
With some strong words at half time from the management team on how we blatantly hadn’t turned up, there was hope we’d go out and put some respectability to the scoreline. That seemed to have fallen on deaf ears as early in the second half the home side made it 5-1 after a fine save from Randlesome in goal only for another rebound to be stroked into the roof of the net. Enough was enough for the management team and they made 3 changes with 25 minutes to go. As Jamie Sheppard, Dom Stagg and Gareff Roque replaced Beer, Greive and Clark. This seemed to breathe new life into the Highworth side who suddenly realised they weren’t out for a Sunday stroll.
With 20 minutes left right back Harry Ayres cut in from out wide before firing an unstoppable shot in off the post from 25 yards for 5-2. Surely the fightback wasn’t on????
With 16 minutes left it was 5-3 as Highworth began to dominate the game and pin the home side back when a cross-cum-shot from substitute Roque drifted in to the far corner.
With all the momentum now with the Worthians, Adderbury found it hard to get out of their half, and with six minutes left some combination football between Lagan and Sheppard led to Sheppard turning and getting his shot away from 12 yards and although the keeper did well to parry it out, Lagan was on hand to fire in for 5-4.
Highworth then kept up the pressure in the quest for the equaliser, but finally ran out of time as the hosts hung on for a 5-4 victory, leaving Chris Ayres, Ross Adams and Hadyn Beer bemused at how for an hour we could be so poor which ultimately has cost us the game.
Credit to our hosts though who played to their strengths on a poor pitch and were the better side by a mile for an hour. If only the Ressies could perform for 90 minutes like they did in the last 30!! Next up Old Bradwell Dev in the Chairman's Challenge Cup.