By Peter Ryan
By Chris Musson
Market Drayton Town 3-0 Clitheroe 30-03-2019
With a handful of enforced changes, Clitheroe slipped back into old ways and were a shadow of themselves from the previous two games.
On a gently sloping, high bouncing pitch, the first 20 minutes belonged to the Blues. Bevan Burey was first to show on 9 minutes, when he pushed the ball past the defender, outran him and whipped an instant cross to the chest of Phil Marsh who controlled the ball and hit his shot on the run narrowly over. Five minutes later, from a Purdham clearance, Burey released Antoine Recizac, who advanced with intent and twisted and turned before hitting his shot narrowly over.
On 22 minutes, Josh Gregory was fouled on the edge of the box and from the resultant free kick, Cole Lonsdale hit the ball firmly at the keeper, who fumbled but the ball did not fall to an attacker. Market Drayton were limited to long balls to chase on to, and went close on 27 minutes. Shortly after, Recizac was at it again, but his shot after great approach play was woeful. Alarm bells rang on 37 minutes when a huge Drayton clearance, was chased down, with the striker rounding the keeper but slicing his shot wide. Finally, as the half ticked down, Burey was clearly fouled on the edge of the Drayton box. The referee signalled play on, and from a huge punt forward, the ball was controlled and after a sway to one side, the striker fooled Purdham with his shot.
Hopes were intact for the second half as the Blues were kicking down the hill, but Max Hazeldine not coming out for the second half did not bode well. On 52 minutes, a Drayton burst down the left saw a scuffed cross, which Purdham could not quite reach as it was steered expertly home. It was now looking a tall order for a recovery and so it proved. The tin lid was put on the score two minutes into added time when from a speculative left wing cross, a lazy swing of the boot saw the ball arrow into the goal, when it really could have gone anywhere.
This was not what Clitheroe’s recent performances had promised and improvement will needed starting on Saturday.
Team : Ben Purdham, Michael Wilson, Cole Lonsdale, Josh Snowden (c), Andy Langford, Hyuga Tanner, Bevan Burey, Josh Gregory, Phil Marsh, Max Hazeldine (Harry Blackburn), Antoine Recizac. Subs - Harry Blackburn. Not used - Jacob Gregory, Jay Jeffries, Ryan Botell, Cameron Terry.