Blast from the past

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Andrew Cornell looks back at Blues’ games on March 10th


A recent game on this date was also one of our better days in our spell in Conference North whne we beat Altrincham away. We had met Altrincham before in the 1981-82 season when we were defending the FA Trophy and we lost in a 4th Round Replay after almost winning the first tie at Moss Lane. When we met in 2012 Blues were in 18th place, stuck in an end of season relegation battle while the Robins were in sixth place, desperate to get into the play offs, so both sides needed the win.

There were few incidents early on as play was even and a little scrappy in the early stages although a free-kick from the right in the third minute from Kieran Walmsley swung dangerously across the area before going out at the far side for a goal-kick. The Blues had the advantage of a stiff breeze in the first half. Ryan Melaugh showed up well on the left a number of times but the first incident of any real note occurred in the 18th minute when a clearance from Sebastian Dunbar rebounded off of Damian Reeves shins and flew not far off the top of Jordan Archer’s bar.

Then, just before the half-hour, pressure from Ricky Sappleton and Dwight Gayle led to the Robins defence conceding a corner and Gayle’s flag kick from the left was spooned out at the near post by keeper Stuart Coburn for another corner. Stortford’s first goal came in the 32nd minute. Jack Lampe’s deep cross to the far side was retrieved by Sappleton. The big striker then drove an angled right footed shot goalwards with the outside of his boot from the left which keeper Coburn could only parry away one handed and Dwight Gayle turned to hit the loose ball into the net from six yards.The hosts came forward more strongly as the interval approached. In the 37th minute Michael Twiss headed over near the far post from a Walmsley cross and during the two minutes of stoppage time leading scorer Damian Reeves headed a John Miles’ corner from the left over the top from close range when unmarked.

Early on after the break Sean Francis made a headed clearance that was collected by Leighton

McGivern but the striker’s shot on the turn was just wide of Jordan Archer’s upright. It was Archer who was able to claim an assist in the Blues’ second goal that arrived in the 51st minute. Archer punted a long ball deep into Atrincham territory and Sappleton with centre back Matt Flynn, not making a strong challenge, the striker half turned to his left to slam the ball inside Coburn’s left upright and high into the net.

The Cheshire side made three substitutions in a matter of a few minutes around the midway stage ofthe second half but it was the Blues who looked the more likely to add to their tally and in the 67th minute they thought they might have had a penalty when Dunbar went down in the box

after a move that initially involved Gayle and Sappleton. However, the only result was a

yellow card from Referee Steven Copeland for Dunbar for diving. In the 78th minute a cross by substitute James Lawrie to the far post was misheaded by Twiss and the danger cleared but in the 84th minute Lawrie and Scott Phelan linked for Reeves to hit the bar with an angled hooked rising effort from 12 yards.

Three minutes later the Blues pushed forward and when skipper Prestedge collected the ball in midfield he found Gayle with an excellent pass out on the right flank. Stortford’s leading marksman cut in to just inside the box where he went down under a challenge from Altrincham skipper Shaun Densmore and a penalty was awarded. Coburn, however, dived to his right to push away Gayle’s spot-kick.

There were three minutes of stoppage time at the conclusion of the match and during that time the hosts pressed hard to get at least a consolation goal but Archer prevented them from that when he clutched on to a low close range shot from substitute Chris Lynch.

 2015 BSFC 2 Staines Town 1 – Conference South

Larkins, Miller, Taylor, Bailey-Dennis, Lee, Allen, Sellears, Tabiri, Pearson, Hayles, Suarez Subs: Walker, Merrifield Not Used: McCall, Nicolau, Salapatas   Scorers: Miller, Pearson

2012 Altrincham 0 BSFC 2 – Conference North

Archer, Lampe, Dunbar, Abdullahi, Francis, Anderson, Gayle, Johnson, Sappleton, Prestedge, Mealaugh Subs: Pavett, Dadson Not Used: Craig, Lettejallow, Shulton   Scorers: Gayle, Sappleton

2007 BSFC 2 Yeading 0 – Conference South

Wright, Collis, Gwillim, Porter, Goodacre, Gillman, Langer, Edwards, Turner, Morgan, Fuller Subs: Mason, Jones, Pearson Not Used: Lockett, Young   Scorers: Porter, Turner

2001 BSFC 3 Romford 2 – Isthmian League Division 1

Desborough, Risley, Endersby, Taylor, Fannon, Kyriacou, Hercules, Southam, John, Paul, Braham Subs: Hayes, Kimble Not Used: Wolf   Scorers: Southam, John Paul

1998 BSFC 1 Leyton Pennant 3 – Eastern Floodlight Competition

King, Edwards, Sedgwick, Campbell, Wardley, Gammons, Anotine, Adekola, Conroy, Comerford, Forbes Subs: Dean, Cooper, Barnaby Scorer: Forbes

1990 BSFC 1 Wokingham Town 2 – Isthmian League Premier Division

Taylor, Jackman, Risley, Hopkins, Harrigan, Went, Bedford, Ryan, Neal, Gayle, Manderson Subs: Spence Not Used: Keune Scorers: Harrigan

1987 BSFC 3 Boreham Wood 0 – Herts Senior Cup Semi-Final

Taylor, Wickenden, Goodchild, Hopkins, Hull, Nunn, Ferguson, Cassidy, Hardy, Weddell, McCaig, Subs: Wood, Barker Scorers: Ferguson, Cassidy (2)

1984 BSFC 2 Staines Town 0 – Isthmian League Premier Division

Welsh, Wickenden, Luque, Smith, Hull, Hopkins, Avery, Cardines, Brooks, Jennings, Mercer Sub Not Used: Elley Scorers: Hopkins, Brooks

1979 St Albans City 3 BSFC 2 – Herts Senior Cup Semi-Final

1973 BSFC 0 Slough Town 1 – FA Amateur Cup Semi-Final (At Watford)

Wiseman, Davenport, Combes, Mitchell, Still, Lawrence, Leakey, Francis, Dear, Smith, Bunker

Sub: ???

1956 Letchworth Town 2 BSFC 1 – Herts Senior Cup 3rd Round

Sullivan, Duncan, Hardy, Lloyd, Carter, Hanley, Simmonds, Yates, Horton, Hussey, Burridge

1934 RAF Uxbridge 3 BSFC 2 – Spartan League Division 1

1928 BSFC 1 Berkhamsted Town – Herts County League

Boxall, Piper, Smith, Wright, Bass, Chapman, Patmore, Mayes, Fordham, Thurgood, Runacres Scorer: Fordham

1923 BSFC 5 Codicote 0 – Herts County League

Boxall, Smith, Walker, R E Punter, L Chapman, J Chapman, Prior, Wright, Brazier, Freeborn, R A Punter Scorers: Brazier (3), Freeborn, R A Punter

Author: Dave Ryan