6 points from Chippenham in Festive Double Header
By Matt Robinson
A brace from Stefan Brown seals all three points at Hardenhuish Park
We started the New Year as we finished the previous one, with another fine win to complete the double over the Bluebirds and climb another place in the league table.
A relegation spot is still too close for comfort, but nine points out of the last twelve is something of which the managers and players can be justly proud and we can look forward to the future with renewed confidence. There are still difficult times ahead however and after Saturday’s match versus Oxford City, who did so well in the F.A.Cup recently, we face two extremely tough matches at Hemel Hempstead and Hampton & Richmond before we are back at Bulpit Lane at the end of the month.
It was a bright and sunny day when we kicked off at Hardenhuish Park and we had a strong wind behind us, but the home side started well and Alex Ferguson soon fired over the bar before bringing a good save from Marcus Beauchamp.
Neither side seemed able to create a clear-cut chance and the first incident of note was a dreadful tackle on Alex Wall by Curtis McDonald which rightly earned him a yellow card. However, we took the lead after 25 minutes when Stefan Brown drove a well-placed shot past Jared Thompson, before a remarkable series of events gave us a 2-0 lead only a few minutes later.
We were awarded a penalty for a foul in the Chippenham area, but Stefan Brown shot wide from the spot, but the jeers of the home crowd were soon silenced when he picked up a poor clearance and slotted the ball into the net within a minute of his penalty miss, to double our lead.
A couple of efforts from Andy Sandell tested Beauchamp just before half-time. The 2-0 lead looked fairly secure, but a wind-aided looping free-kick from Josh Smile deceived Beauchamp who could only deflect the ball over his head into his own net after 76 minutes reduced the arrears and gave Chippenham hope but we defended well and held on fairly comfortably to complete a memorable double over our near-neighbours.
Team; Marcus Beauchamp, Rhys Tyler, Paul Stonehouse, James Rusby, Matt Williams, Ritchie Whittingham, Ian Herring, Stefan Brown (James Clark) Nicholas Bignall (Louie Soares), Alex Wall.
Subs; Diak John, Anton Rodgers, Scott Rees.