Monday, 19 March 2018

Clark’s deft touches secures victory

Ben Clark representing Henley Town FC

HENLEY TOWN completed their first double of the season on Saturday, overcoming Rayners Lane at the Triangle in Division 1 East of the Hellenic League, writes Graham Harris.

Once the surface water has been cleared, the Invesco Perpetual Triangle pitch looked remarkably good.

Henley kicked off and immediately threatened the Rayners Lane defence as Ben Clark saw his early shot saved.

Jordan Tollett, a recent acquisition to the Kites defence, cut out a host of dangerous balls, as Smith and Nortey looked lively in attack.

A cross from McPherson sailed past the Henley goalmouth as Ansah just failed to connect, for the visitors.

Heneghan was shown a yellow card for Rayners Lane after a hard challenge on Faherty. Towards the end of the first half, Stainsby was called upon to make another fine save from a Tollett header.

Kites’ Sam Rolfe was the second player to receive a yellow card following an infringement.

In the second half Julian Smith’s rapid route for goal was curtailed, when he was upended by Kites keeper Fairchild, conceding a penalty. Callum McCarroll drilled the ball past Fairchild to put the visitors ahead on 50 minutes.

Rayners Lane’s McPherson had the ball in the net again shortly afterwards but the attempt was deemed offside by the referee.

Henley battled to get back into the game and their opportunity came after winning a corner when the cross into the area was headed into the net by Billy Gordon on the hour mark.

The Red Kites seized the momentum as Karl Sims made a run down the wing, his cross finding Ben Clark who deftly turned the ball past Stainsby to put the hosts ahead on 70 minutes.

Henley replaced Warren Baxter with Tom Sheppard with fifteen minutes to play while James Mattan received a yellow card late in the game for the visitors.

Stainsby, who had a good afternoon between the posts, pulled off a good save from a fine strike by Sims.

Substitute Mattan came close to scoring an equaliser for Rayners but Henley held firm to secure the three points.

Henley Town: Fairchild, Nunn, Rolfe, G Sims, Baxter, Tollett, Faherty, Gordon, Howell, Clark, K Sims, Donegan, Sheppard, Witt.

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