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MATCH REPORTS 2005-06

Southern League Premier Division

Northwood Line-up

1

Adam Federici

 

2

Dave Nolan

 

3

Frazer Toms *

 

4

Jason O'Connor

 

5

Billy Matthews

 

6

Paul Kelly

 

7

Luke Garrard

 

8

Ian Savage +

 

9

Matthew Judge

 

10

Peter Dean

 

11

Dean Clark #

 

Substitutes

12

Fergus Moore

 

14

Gavin Hart *

 

15

Alistair Heselton #

 

16

Shayne Demetrious

 

17

Richard Gell +

 

 Evesham United 4  Northwood 0

Report by Robin Piper

Northwood’s season hit a new low as they succumbed meekly to their fellow strugglers in a fog bound encounter by the River Avon in a game which was billed as a must-win “six-pointer”.

It was touch and go whether the game would go ahead, and it was the hosts who adapted better to the dreadful conditions to run out easy winners.

Ian Savage reclaimed the captain’s armband for Northwood, partnering Paul Kelly in central midfield, Frazer Toms replaced absentee Leigh Harrington on the left flank, while there was a return to the three-man defence for Dave Nolan at the expense of Fergus Moore.

After a bright opening in which Woods showed plenty of purpose the weather had its first say in the proceedings. Former Coventry man John Willams launched a speculative long range effort through the murk  which  deceived  keeper Adam Federici to give the Robins a 14th minute lead.

Woods should have posted an immediate reply as they fashioned an opening, Peter Dean, Matthew Judge and Dean Clark all in attendance but unable to get a clean shot on goal.

If the first goal had been harsh on Northwood, there was no excuses on 19 minutes as Matthew Lewis scored his first of the afternoon, being allowed to waltz unchallenged through Woods defence to extend Evesham’s lead.

For all their endeavour and pretty patterns Northwood were struggling to get the ball into the danger area, and given the foggy conditions, were surprisingly shot-shy and reluctant to try their luck from distance.

However, in a rare foray into the Evesham’s third of the pitch, Dean saw his shot sail safely over the far post after a neat flick-on from Judge.

Northwood had to make a change on 36 minutes, Frazer Toms requiring stitches in a head wound, Gavin Hart being his replacement.

Meanwhile, the Robins had chances to extend their lead, Richard Ball sending a low ball across the face of goal before his header was safely gathered by Federici.

Woods needed a reply before the break, and they were unlucky not to reduce the arrears before the break. Home keeper Dave Adey pulled off a fine point-blank save to deny Clark, then a goalmouth melee saw Clark and Luke Garrard having their bite of the cherry but neither were unable to bundle the ball home.

Woods created a couple of openings early in the second half, but once again the fancy build-up was lacking a killer finish, Judge the guilty party.

Richard Gell was introduced to the fray after 55 minutes, Savage making way, but Northwood were looking increasingly forlorn and unlikely to find a way back.

And it was no surprise as Evesham put the game beyond doubt  in the 62nd minute, Williams getting beyond defender Billy Matthews before stroking the ball home to score his second of the afternoon.

Northwood’s misery continued two minutes later as Lewis secured his brace, firing home from close range to complete the scoring.

Alistair Heselton made a belated appearance from the subs bench but it was more of the same from ‘powder-puff’ Woods in the closing stages as their efforts lacked conviction.

And it was with great relief that the final whistle sounded and your correspondent was able to find sanctuary in the warmth of Evesham hospitality, the pain of Woods’ increasingly desperate situation briefly eased by the delights of faggots, chips and mushy peas.