United Counties League Premier Division
Newport Pagnall 2
Sleaford Town 0
THIS was not a bad effort by Town against a side currently placed third in the table and still undefeated.
The first half was particularly well contested but the long-standing problem of finishing continues to haunt the side, despite some decent attacking moves and genuine chances.
In only the first minute right-back Nathan Rawdon delivered a good through ball that was controlled well by Tom Sargeant for a touch on to Jamie Shaw but the keeper saved comfortably. On the other flank Lee Llewellyn crossed, the ball headed out for Shaun Popple to hit well over the top.
Haw then sent in a free-kick that was headed over by defender Joe Braithwaite.
Town were well in this game right from the start, yet there was to be a real lesson on eleven minutes. From the home side’s first real chance, Dominic Lawless despatched a good finish into the far corner of the net. 1-0.
So, despite all the early play, Town were already chasing the game. There was a blow on 23 minutes when Popple injured his left knee and had to leave the field. On went substitute Steve Lovett.
Sleaford keeper Andy Hewitt went down bravely to save at the foot of the post from the ever-dangerous Matt Broomes. Back at the other end Sargeant laid a pass back for Ash Murrell to hit a snap shot wide from 25 paces out.
Early in the second half a direct free-kick from Llewellyn went just wide. However, Town perhaps did not enjoy quite the same amount of possession in this second period.
Just past the hour Shaw was replaced by leading striker Liam Tunstall. Now came a good Town move as a forward ball from Adam Fenton found Sargeant who flicked it on for Richard Jackson. He touched on to Murrell for a shot that went just over.
Another free-kick, this time by Jackson, was well saved for a corner. Keeper Hewitt was again called into action as he came up with a tremendous double save from Broomes and Lawless, both shots from barely eight yards out.
Then with one minute left of the 90, Lawless snapped up a chance for goal number two and the game was over.
Sleaford Town: 1 Andy Hewitt; 2 Nathan Rawdon; 3 Adam Fenton; 4 Joe Braithwaite; 5 Nick Bishop; 6 Shaun Popple; 7 Ashley Murrell; 8 Richard Jackson; 9 Jamie Shaw; 10 Tom Sargeant; 11 Lee Llewellyn. Subs: Subs: Steve Lovett, Liam Tunstall, J McCormack, Ryan Oliver, Glen Maddison.