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Southern League Premier Division

Northwood Line-up


Rob Bullivant



Gary Meakin


Fergus Moore



Jason O'Connor



James Shipperley



Wayne Carter



Rob Courtnage


Dean Clark


Alistair Heselton +



Peter Dean


Frazer Toms *



Billy Matthews



Aaron Ferdinand *



Daniel Hawes +



Billy Baker


Michael Lavender




Heselton 1-1


Dean 2-1


Courtnage 3-2

 Northwood 3  Yate Town 2

Report by Robin Piper

Northwood returned to winning ways with a crucial win over play-off chasing Yate Town, and they were indebted to a stunning 30-yard Rob Courtnage volley as they recovered from a goal behind to take the spoils.

There were a number of changes to the Northwood line-up. Frazer Toms returned from injury in place of the unwell Gavin Hart, while Courtnage started in central midfield in place of Luke Garrard, who left the club for AFC Wimbledon during the week. Meanwhile, Rob Bullivant donned the ‘keeper’s jersey in place of the suspended Liam Watson, whilst there was a return to the attack for Alistair Heselton.

Woods weren’t at the races in the early stages and they fell behind as early as the 5th minute. Jason O’Connor was second best in a block challenge with Jason Wood who lifted the ball through to Darren Edwards who put the ball beyond Bullivant. The game remained a scrappy affair with little goalmouth action.

Northwood’s first chance was created on 18 minutes, Dean Clark’s shot on the turn from Heselton’s cross flying narrowly wide.

Moments later, Woods had a penalty appeal turned down as Heselton was impeded as he shot wide of the far post.

Northwood gradually began to find their feet and they were rewarded with an equaliser on 35 minutes. O’Connor played the ball into Clark, who flicked on to Dean, his low cross finding Heselton who swept the ball home from close range.

Woods then enjoyed the perfect start to the second half. Bullivant’s long drop kick caught the Yate rearguard napping, and Peter Dean got beyond Lee Vickerman to coolly slot the ball beyond visiting keeper Tony Court.

Yate proceeded to put the Northwood defence under intense pressure. Darren Edwards spurned a couple of opportunities, whilst Paul Chenoweth saw his speculative long range effort fly over the bar.

Bullivant was called into action as he pulled off a point blank save to deny Chenoweth, Jimmy Cox firing the rebound over with the goal at his mercy.

And the Woods’ stopper had to be on his toes again when he tipped Edwards’ flicked header over the bar.

However, Northwood’s resistance was finally broken from the penalty spot on the hour mark. Fergus Moore was adjudged to have fouled Mike Wyatt, Edwards stepping up to convert the resulting spot kick to put Yate back on level terms

Aaron Ferdinand replaced the tiring Toms as Northwood looked to regain the advantage.

Dean tested Court with a shot on the turn after a quick throw-on from James Shipperley, whilst Clark saw his header from Gary Meakin’s cross sail wide.

But the winning goal for Northwood came like a bolt out of the blue, Courtnage latching onto a ball to fire an unstoppable 30 yarder into the top corner to give the hosts a precious 75th minute lead.

There were further chances at both ends, Heselton having a run into the box before his shot was blocked whilst Bullivant dealt comfortably with Adam Sims’ header.

Youngster Daniel Hawes was introduced in stoppage time for his debut following his promotion from the reserves, but there was to be no late drama as Woods secured the points which puts the fight against relegation back on track.