The Evo-Stik Returned to Rainworth Tonight
Unfortunately for Rainworth it was in guise of Handsworth Parramore who not only had an Evo-Stik quality team on the pitch but it filtered down to the substitute’s bench as well.
Rainworth defended manfully in the first half and it took until well into injury time for Handsworth to breach it and score their opening goal.
The second half continued as the first and although Rainworth had their moments it was Handsworth who added to their score and ran out deserved 4-0 winners.
Handsworth almost scored from the kick-off when Ben Townsend miscontrolled a back pass and was fortunate to see the Handsworth block ricochet to safety.
On five minutes Rainworth had their first attempt on goal but Matt Sykes’s snatched effort was well wide.
Handsworth almost took the lead on 9 minutes but Tom Dugdale’s effort was somehow cleared off the line by Danny Claridge.
A good piece of interpassing between Aaron Moxam and Sykes saw Syke’s cross sliced clear at the expense of a corner.
Most of the action was in the Rainworth half and on 13 minutes and excellent turn and shot by Danny Holland just cleared the bar.
Rainworth came close when Claridge’s free-kick took a deflection forcing Joseph Green into an excellent save at full stretch.
Rainworth were given another scare when in the 20th minute Kieran Well’s effort flew across the face of goal and fortunately past the far post.
Still Handsworth searched for the opener and when Tom Dugdale’s free-kick bounced about the area, Rainworth managed to clear it at the expense of a corner.
A couple of minutes later and Townsend somehow managed to turn Holland’s point-blank effort around the post. At this point it was constant pressure form Handsworth.
It was however Rainworth who almost scored the opening goal when a quick free-kick found Sykes and his fierce shot was brilliantly saved one-handed by Green.
One of the moves of the half saw Alex Rippon run past four defenders only to put his effort just wide of the post.
Rainworth were battling to hang on and on 38 minutes had shots from Declan Brewin and Rob Ludlam in quick succession but neither troubled the keeper.
On 42 minutes Rainworth almost went back to their bad old ways of gifting goals, when a long ball from Green caused a mix-up in defence but Handsworth weren’t able to capitalise and it was cleared for a corner. From the corner Townsend tipped Holland’s effort over the bar.
It was Townsend to the rescue once again in the final minute of normal time when he blocked Wells’s goal-bound effort.
Handsworth weren’t to be denied and well into injury time in the first half, as the ball bounced around the six-yard box, Rippon pounced and stabbed it home to open the scoring. There was just enough time to restart the game before the referee blew to end the half.
Rainworth were straight under pressure at the start of the second half but they had the first goal threat in the 49th minute when Sykes found Moxam with an excellent ball in the area but it wouldn’t come down and it was cleared.
Handsworth made no mistake with their first opportunity and a great run and cross to the far post saw Wells make no mistake with a fine header for the second.
Rainworth had to replace debutant Ryan Booker on 59 minutes bringing on Nathan Clarke.
Handsworth got their third on 62 minutes when a fine run and cross was initially missed by two Handsworth players but Holland made no mistake at the far post.
Holland was involved in the next Handsworth chance but his excellent cross was just missed by Dugdale at full stretch.
The rest bite was short lived as on 71 minutes from a corner Rippon is allowed a clear header and he makes no mistake for the fourth.
Rainworth started to come more into the game but Brewin’s long range effort and Moxam’s shot were dealt with by Green.
Townsend once again came to Rainworth’s rescue when tipped Colin Marrison’s effort over the bar at the expense of a corner.
Still Rainworth searched for a consolation goal and Phil Buxton’s cross was headed just wide by Joe Cheeseman.
Brewin was unlucky to see his turn and run at the defence thwarted when Green tipped his fierce shot onto the post and out for a corner. Then Moxam ran at the defence but his effort hit the side netting.
In the final attack of the half Holland almost scored but his effort clipped the top of the crossbar.
At the whistle Handsworth were deserved winners and their display on the night showed why they are the team to beat this season.
RAINWORTH MWFC: Townsend; Ludlam; Claridge; Hutchinson; Cheeseman; Booker (Clarke); Brewin; Holmes; Moxam; Buxton; Sykes. Subs (not used): Weir; Watts; A.Widdowson.
Referee: Edward Piddock.
Man of the match: Ben Townsend.