Nearly six months ago Crooklands Casuals travelled to Lytham and were absolutely destroyed. Memories of such a defeat are hard to banish so there was no real surprise if this was on the mind of the players going into the game. As it turned out a performance of high quality gave Cassies a 3-1 win. Maybe not as high scoring as the game at Lytham last September but a revenge of sorts all the same.
This was The Orangemens fifth consecutive league win, and by far their most impressive of them. Although the last four games had brought wins they had been hard fought victories all by one goal and all requiring a resolute last ten minutes to bring home the points. As a team this is a great asset to have, but Coach Jonathan Lowes
must be delighted in the way that when they really had to his team took the game to a good Lytham outfit and got their just rewards.
The game started at a high tempo and within five minutes Cassies were One up when a cross on the left from Chris Wraighte
found Lowes free in the area who nodded past the stranded keeper. Make no mistake though,in Lytham the home side were facing good opposition who seemed to be very confident in possession of the ball and almost immediately the scores were deservedly level when an unmarked striker headed home to make the score 1-1.
Cassies didn't let this setback get to them and came straight back at their opposition. In fact both sides were playing at a high level with Lytham playing their part in what must have been a delight to watch for the crowd who were enjoying the sunshine. In the twentieth minute a spell of possession from Crooklands ended with the ball fed out to Michael Hargreaves
who delivered a perfect delivery to the head of Dave Mansergh
who couldn't miss from five yards out. Lytham were now rocking and a third goal always looked likely, and sure enough it came on the half hour when a short corner between Lowes and Wraighte allowed Lowes to drive in from the by-line as he rolled back the years by first nut megging his first challenger before ghosting past the next and laying the ball on a plate to his former Kirkham team mate Mansergh who rifled the ball home.
At half time the home side were reminded that the same Lytham side had been three goals down at half time against Dalton Utd only last week and after bringing that game back to 3-2 would be not giving up the game up quite so easily. It would be important to maintain the tempo and discipline throughout the game. As it transpired the players managed to do this with some ease. The Cassies defence were well protected by the Midfield but when called on were able to deal with anything thrown at them, and one felt that if there was another goal in the contest it would be another for Crooklands. Glyn Caine
was dominating the midfield with Hargreaves, Paul Muspratt
and Wraighte also standing out, but it almost seems harsh to single individuals out when all fourteen players played their part in a great squad effort on what was an unseasonably hot Longlands Park.
As the game finished all thoughts go to next weeks tie at top of the league and unbeaten Longridge Town. The Lancashire side are currently top of the league and have been enjoying some excellent results of late, but Lowes can be happy that his side are also going into the fixture enjoying some confidence and form of their own.