Match report

Rugby 3 - 2 Tiverton Town

   Tuesday 13/04/2010   Southern League Premier Division
Alan Reidy

Tiverton Town continue to make life hard for themselves, and on Tuesday evening crashed to defeat at Rugby Town, a result that leaves the Yellows precariously close to the relegation places in the Southern League Premier Division. Basement club Rugby, who are already relegated, punished two individual errors early in the game to race into a two-goal lead, and struck a third with ten minutes remaining to extend Tiverton’s poor run of results to just one victory in twelve outings.

Despite a bright start from Tivvy Rugby took the lead in the ninth minute when Joe Bushin was cheaply dispossessed in midfield and the home side quickly broke forward. David Kolodynski neatly split the Tiverton defence with a cheeky back heel and Matt Brown raced free before planting a firm shot into the bottom corner, leaving Steve Book with no chance.

And the celebrations had barely died down when Rugby added a second within sixty seconds. Having won the ball back straight from the kick off Michael Love played a long ball which Tom Kington inadvertently headed backwards, and again Kolodynski was in place to capitalise. This time the Rugby forward rolled a more orthodox cross-field pass to his strike partner and Brown punished Tiverton from the edge of the area with a carbon copy finish.

Rugby could and should have further extended their advantage in a first half that was one-way traffic, and Book had to be at his best to deny Kolodynski, while the same player then crashed a low shot against the post having done well to create space inside the area.

Tiverton’s only chance of note in an otherwise poor first period should have resulted in the deficit being reduced, but Jake Wannell shot onto the crossbar and Alex Faux was unable to hit the target from the rebound.

The Yellows improved dramatically after the break and both Jamie Hatch and Colin Marshall brought saves from Rugby goalkeeper Danny Bell as Tiverton pressed forward. Hatch became increasingly prominent as Tivvy pinned back their hosts, and it was his cross from which substitute Elliott Frear brought out another good save from Bell.

Town were finally rewarded for their pressure with twenty minutes remaining when Liam Head, on as a replacement for Adam Mortimer, volleyed high into the net after Rugby’s defence failed to clear a Mike Booth shot. And just two minutes later Hatch had a goal ruled out for offside as he turned home Bushin’s looping header.

Hatch then sent a shot across the face of goal with Bell beaten, but as the Yellows threw caution to the wind they were undone against the run of play. Book’s punt upfield was cut out by James Farrow and Matt Gearing sprinted clear of the high Tiverton defence to beat Book in a one-on-one situation.

Tiverton responded immediately and set about reducing Rugby’s lead again. Nathan Rudge headed Marshall’s free kick just over, and Head was unable to get any purchase on Richard Pears’ low cross two minutes from time. But with the next assault Tiverton did draw to within one goal again, Pears finding space wide on the left and curling a delightful cross which Bushin acrobatically met with a diving header.

In stoppage time Hatch was denied by the woodwork, sending in a shot that cracked against the bar with Bell flat footed, and Booth was unable to turn in the rebound from close range.

Defeat means Tiverton remain just two points above the drop zone with four games remaining. The first of those is at Ladysmead on Saturday against Halesowen Town, with home matches on Monday and Wednesday against Swindon Supermarine and Truro City respectively. The final weekend of the season sees the Yellows travel to fellow strugglers Bedford Town on 24th April in a game which may decide which of the two finishes in the relegation places.

Rugby Town: Danny Bell, Matt Gearing, Chris Hollist, Chris Tullin, Sean Castleton, Michael Love, James Farrow (Andrew Stevens 90), Sam Youngs, David Kolodynski, Matt Brown, Karl Fellows
Goals: Brown 9, 10, Gearing 80
Booked: Gearing 80
Sent off: None

Tiverton Town: Steve Book, Jake Wannell (Elliott Frear 52), Alex Faux, Mike Booth, Nathan Rudge, Tom Gardner, Jamie Hatch, Colin Marshall, Joe Bushin, Adam Mortimer (Liam Head 65), Tom Kington (Richard Pears 77)
Goals: Head 69, Bushin 89
Booked: Marshall 90
Sent off: None

Attendance: 108

This report ©2010 Alan Reidy