10:00am Monday 30th September 2013
Double strikes from Kieran Sanders and substitute Jacob Walcott put North Leigh top of Division 1 South & West for the first time since they gained promotion to the Southern League five years ago following their 4-1 win at home to Cinderford on Saturday.
The Millers’ captain Stuart Hole saw his well-struck free-kick well saved by Cinderford keeper Alex Harris after ten minutes.
At the other end Cinderford’s big striker Lewis Sommers was an ever-present threat with his knock- downs and lay-offs to colleagues.
However, North Leigh took the lead in the 33rd minute.
Sanders, receiving possession on the right side of the penalty area, turned inside his marker and hit a left-foot shot past Harris into the far corner of the net.
Sanders struck again just before half-time after a defensive error.
Cinderford skipper Dan Harrison hit a back pass to Harris, who instead of hacking it upfield, unwisely tried to beat the incoming Sanders.
The Millers’ striker won the ball and tapped it home into the empty net to make it 2-0.
Cinderford upped their pace at the start of the second half and pulled a goal back when Dave Bird shot past keeper Paul White from close range.
The visitors pressed for the equaliser and only a spectacular diving save from White prevented Dale Evans’s curling free-kick leveling the scores.
The keeper collided with the post, but after treatment recovered to save from the subsequent corner.
At the other end, Harris produced an equally good save to deny Hole’s 25-yard free-kick.
The turning-point came when Millersboss Mark Gee brought on three substitutes, which reinforced the defence and added pace up front.
Walcott, with pace to burn, made it 3-1 in the 83rd minute.
James Organ put in a low cross from the left that evaded the defence, leaving Walcott to tap home at the far post.
Five minutes from time, Harrison was dismissed following a lunging tackle on Walcott on the edge of the box. In the 89th minute, Aaron Woodley on the right beat a defender before slipping the ball to Walcott, who shot past Harris from five yards to complete the scoring.
North Leigh: White, Hole, Organ, Osborne-Rick-etts (Walcott 72), Gunn, Caton, Sanders, Bowles (Turk 58), Woodley, McDonagh, Williams (Else 58). Subs not used: Westlake, Dutton-Black.
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