Monday, 16 July 2018

Watlington put in gritty performance

WATLINGTON TOWN secured all three points as they defeated North Oxford at home in Division 1 of the Oxfordshire Senior

WATLINGTON TOWN secured all three points as they defeated North Oxford at home in Division 1 of the Oxfordshire Senior League last Saturday.

The visitors started the brighter of the two sides with their front two causing problems for Watlington with their high work rate, strength and movement.

However it was Watlington who took the lead midway through the first half against the run of play.

A mistake from the North Oxford centre half allowed Luke Yeulet to steal the ball. Still with a lot to do, the Watlington centre forward pushed the ball into the empty space and drove towards goal, eventually slotting the ball past the on-rushing keeper.

Despite the goal, the visitors continued to press and nearly equalised but for James Conn in the Watlington goal making some excellent stops.

North Oxford’s pressure paid off a minute before half-time when a misplaced pass from the home side found its way to the visitors’ number 11, who evaded two challenges and calmly stabbed home from close range.

After 65 minutes the hosts retook the lead when Lancaster was able to steal the ball from the visitors’ defence and produced a sublime finish to lob the keeper from 12 yards.

For the remaining 25 minutes both teams had chances to score.

Stevenson was unlucky to hit the bar from a well struck free-kick while Clements was unable to direct the rebound goalwards, heading over from six yards. Stevenson was then unlucky again, firing just over after Rigozzi had released him down the right hand side.

North Oxford had chances of their own. A string of corners provided a few tense moments but Conn was commanding in the Watlington goal. Steve Strong also made a decisive block, denying the visitors an equaliser.

Watlington’s victory was confirmed a minute into injury time when James Taylor’s long ball evaded the North Oxford defence, leaving Stevenson to roll the ball past the keeper to take his tally to 16 for the season.

Watlington return to cup action tomorrow (Saturday) in the first round of the Ben Turner Cup when they entertain Northway.

In Division 3 WATLINGTON TOWN RESERVES lost 4-2 away to BROUGHTON AND NORTH NEWINGTON.

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