Improving Sleaford Town make their point

Town celebrate Hayden's first-half equaliser against Wellingborough PICTURE: Russell Dossett EMN-170910-172226002
Town celebrate Hayden's first-half equaliser against Wellingborough PICTURE: Russell Dossett EMN-170910-172226002
Share this article

Sleaford Town manager Jamie Shaw believes individual focus has helped his team improve after seeing his side move off the foot of the table on Saturday.

Town followed up their second win of the season in the Lincolnshire Senior Trophy in midweek by earning a 3-3 draw at home to Wellingborough Whitworth.

Hayden finds acres of space to complete his hat-trick Picture: Russell Dossett EMN-170910-172213002

Hayden finds acres of space to complete his hat-trick Picture: Russell Dossett EMN-170910-172213002

The point – only their second in 13 United Counties League games – was enough to take them off the bottom of the Premier and above Northampton ON Chenecks.

Shaw said: “We have been working hard with the lads on their individual roles and responsibilities within the formation that we want them to play, and it is credit to them our performances have been improving little by little each week.”

A poor start saw Town concede early against their fellow league strugglers, but they showed good spirit to fight back and lead at half-time.

The hosts levelled on the half-hour when good interplay ended with Michael Hayden heading home George Couzens’ cross.

And five minutes before the break they were in front when Hayden scored his second from the penalty spot after Couzens was upended.

Once more Town were slow out of the blocks and fell behind to two poor goals soon after the restart,

But Hayden secured a hard-fought point and a hat-trick thanks to another Couzens assist after an hour.

“It was another improved performance, but with losses of concentration at the start of both halves,” Shaw added.

“We showed great character to come from behind twice and should really have probably nicked the win.

“It could be a valuable point, though, and takes us off the bottom so we’ll take that and aim to keep our improvement going.”

Town faced a tough few days in the league with a trip to sixth-placed Deeping Rangers on Tuesday night and third-placed Daventry Town on Saturday (ko 3pm).

While Sleaford have yet to take three points in a league outing, they secured their second knockout win of the season last Wednesday.

Tom Figura’s double helped Town see off UCL Division One side Pinchbeck United 3-1 and book an away quarter-final against more Division One opponents, Bourne Town.

Although Pinchbeck play a tier below Town, they came into the game riding high in Division One.

Archie Moyses converted a penalty to put Sleaford ahead before Figura doubled the advantage with a neat lob.

The visitors looked set for a nervous finale when Pinchbeck pulled one back with 10 minutes left, but another Figura lob made sure of Sleaford’s progress.

Shaw was happy with the result, if not the performance.

“On Wednesday we played really poorly in terms of our composure and passing ability, but we defended very solidly and took our chances when they came,” he said.

“Tom Figura worked his socks off up front and thoroughly deserved his two goals.”