Canaries Chirpier Than The Robins
Report by David Robinson
Ashton’s play off hopes suffered a further setback with a defeat on their first visit to Barwell’s Kirkby Road ground. The visitors were without leading scorer Martin Pilkington and club captain Chris Lynch due to work commitments and were playing against the slope in the first half which saw home winger Edwards latch on to a through ball and poke his effort past Phillips but also beyond the far post.
Still within the first 10 minutes the Robins almost opened their account as Chadwick headed a left wing cross against the crossbar before Ashley Young put the rebound straight into Castle’s midriff. Journeyman striker Anthony Griffith-Junior was leading the home attack and beat the offside trap before putting his cross to the far post where Hood headed over when well placed and then a fine break by the hosts saw Barlone head Hendrie’s fine cross over the top. The breakthrough arrived on 25 minutes as Hadland’s forward pass put Barlone through on Philips and he slotted home confidently. The Canaries could have extended their advantage just before the interval as captain Hadland also beat the offside trap but fired over from a promising position.
After the break Griffith-Junior found Gudger almost breaking through but he was stopped by a heavy touch, after which Chadwick was fouled by the by-line but Haslam’s free kick saw the resulting header blocked. Haslam was making his first full appearance deputising at right back and almost brought Ashton level as he stepped inside a couple of challenges and fired in a fine left foot effort which was touched onto the crossbar by Castle, and then Matty Kosylo was given a clear run on goal but knocked the ball too close to the home keeper.
Ashton used all three substitutions in an effort to turn things around but Barwell went closest as a great cross by Barlone just evaded Gudger before Joe O’Neill’s shot from the edge of the area was blocked for a corner and a free kick came back to Haslam who fired over from 20 yards. Ashton’s final attempt to level matters saw Gorton’s fierce effort blocked and Garry Gee’s follow up hit just off target.
Team; Phillips, Haslam, Pearson, Gorton, Higgins, Young, Kosylo, Gee, Johnson (O’Neill), Chalmers (Coo), Chadwick (Coppin). SNU: Halford, Bevons.