Robins Bow Out With A Whimper
Report by David Robinson
Ashton disappointingly bowed out of the Integro Doodson Cup at the first attempt as the visitors scored a deserved victory at Hurst Cross. Just 3 minutes had elapsed when the Dabbers moved ahead as a fine pass released Josh Hancock and his cross was converted by the unmarked Liam Shotton who was to prove a thorn in Ashton’s side all evening. Jody Banim’s return pass was then just too strong for Stephen Mason before Steve Jones’ pullback was fired straight at Phillips by Sam Hall.
A free kick then led to Gary Gee sending a curling effort into the arms of former Ashton keeper Terry Smith who was to remain largely untroubled throughout the evening and shortly afterwards Smith just parried Matty Chadwick’s low effort sufficiently to prevent the ball crossing the line. Gee again went close after a decent move had seen debutant Jack Haggerty set him up from Chadwick’s pull back but a minute later Short retrieved the ball from the by line and played in Shotton for an emphatic finish from the edge of the area.
Ten minutes after the break Shotton was again in the action as he played Jones into the area, Joe Connor across well to cover for Ashton and another quick break for Nantwich saw Jones’ effort deflected over the top. Aaron Burns flick then almost put Joel Melia in on goal with Moran intervening with a timely tackle and immediately a long pass released Nantwich substititue Osbourn who beat Cavell Coo and rounded the advancing Phillips before finishing confidently.
Chris Sutherland then went close with a header from a corner which stayed out despite Will Haining’s best efforts and Stephen Mason then headed Jeff King’s free kick just wide from inside the 6 yard area which was as close as the Robins had come all evening. Shotton could have made matters even worse as he outmuscled Connor and saw his cross deflect off Mason into Phillips’ arms and he then picked up a loose ball and ran from halfway before slicing wide.
Ashton United: Phillips, Coo, Mason, Lees, Connor, Haining, Haggerty, Gee (King), Burns, Banim (Melia), Chadwick (Sutherland) SNU: Morning, Vincent.