Wrens let early lead slip
Rainworth having taken a well earned lead on 13th minute with a goal from EWAN CLARKE let the game slip away in the last 5 minutes of the first half with soft goals on 40 and 45 minutes, writes Les Lee.
Rainworth attacked from the kick off when JARED HOLMES went past three defenders, played the ball out to CLARKE on the right wing, his first time cross found BACON in front of goal but his header went over the bar.
Five minutes later after good play down the right, BACON saw his angled shot go across the goal and out of play at the front post.
Rainworth came close when LLOYD won the ball and good interchange with HOLMES put CLARKE clear on the right of the area his shot was blocked by the keeper which rebounded to CLARKE and his second shot went across the face of goal and cleared.
Sheffield’s first attack saw MARTIN clear into the area but his shot was well saved by keeper McCORMACK. The resulting corner fell to HADFIELD on the edge of the 6yd box, whose shot was blocked on the line by McCORMACK.
The opening goal came on 13 minutes when Rainworth were awarded a free kick on the right wing. HOLMES floated it into the area and EWAN CLARKE headed the ball into the far corner, giving Rainworth a deserved lead.
On 20 minutes HANSON made a good run from Rainworth’s area to Sheffield’s area crossing the ball to SPARGO whose shot was blocked and cleared for a corner. Keeper FLYNN collected the ball from the corner and Sheffield broke quickly. Sheffield were awarded a free kick 5 yds outside the area but WOOLLEY knocked it wide of the post.
On 32 minutes, Sheffield came close when STEPHENS rounded the keeper in the area but his angled shot was interrupted by WALKER who cleared the danger.
Sheffield were on top at this stage of the game and applied the pressure which brought 3 good saves from McCORMACK to prevent them equalising. BACON; injured in a collision with keeper FLYNN left the pitch for 5 minutes. He came back as Sheffield won a corner. WALKER headed the ball out but it was knocked back into the back post where MARTIN was unmarked and he glanced the ball in off the post.
On 45 minutes, with no danger around, Rainworth played a poor back pass to the keeper who was put under pressure and was forced to play the ball out to the touchline but the ball was picked up by WOOLLEY who tapped the ball to MARTIN on the edge of the 6 yd box who made no mistake from that distance, giving Sheffield a 2-1 lead.
Sheffield opened the second half and again the Rainworth defence was stretched and a third goal came when GOWARD’S clearance on the edge of the area was blocked and the ball picked up by GASCOIGNE who went around 3 defenders into the area and slotted the ball into the far corner giving McCORMACK no chance. Rainworth then fought back taking the game to Sheffield.
There was a strong appeal for a penalty on 60 minutes when LLOYD broke into the area with pace and was brought down, but no penalty was given. On 63 minutes new signing KARL SLACK put a good cross over the face of goal but CLARKE just failed to connect.
Rainworth continued to push forward and won a corner on 70 minutes. The corner fell to WALKER outside the 6 yd box and he blistered the ball over the bar. On 74 minutes HOLMES put GOWARD clear down the left wing, his cross found SPARGO whose header forced a good save from keeper FLYNN. The resulting corner was headed over the bar by PAYNE.
Sheffield introduced 3 substitutes at this stage of the game, one of them being VILL POWELL . McKENZIE now on the right wing made a good run and crossed the ball to POWELL on the edge of the 6 yd box. McCORMACK was quickly out to save but collided with POWELL and injured his shoulder in doing so. There was a delay and McCORMACK carried on but on 85 minutes he went for a ball, received another knock and broke down on the edge of the area.
Sheffield carried on playing and the Referee permitted them to play on with McCORMACK laying motionless on the ground.
The game was stopped when GOWARD gave away a foul just outside the area. JOE McCORMACK left the field and Captain MARK CAMM went in goal. The resulting free kick went over the bar.
Rainworth were in the Sheffield area on 89 minutes and should have scored, but missed the chance. The ball was played out quickly to McKENZIE who ran the length of the field. HANSON kept pace with him but slipped when about to make his tackle giving McKENZIE a free run into the area, his shot hitting the far post and rebounding in.