Brackley Town  2-0  Boston United   19/4/19

Saints close in on third place finish

 Brackley completed a league double over visitors Boston United to stay in third place with a play-off spot already secure as Boston, reduced to ten men, suffered a third successive defeat.

 The win was ultimately a comfortable one with a goal in each half but Saints were made to work hard in a first half short on goal action and of only meagre entertainment for a shirt-sleeved Bank Holiday crowd.  The second half was altogether more exciting as Saints eased to a second win of the week having won at Altrincham on Tuesday evening.

 “I can’t fault the players as they put a really good shift in today,” Pilgrims manager Craig Elliott said.  “To a man they were great, especially first half.  Brackley are a fantastic outfit and teams probably better than us have come here with eleven players and been beaten by more than two nil.  You can see the difference in confidence.  They are the team going for promotion and we’re the team that is ready for the season to end.”

 The first half was almost devoid of goal chances but the best two opportunities were for Boston as twice George Smith was denied.  Brackley finally broke the stale-mate on 44 minutes with their first shot on target.  Lee Ndlovu was the creator, his driving run setting up Jimmy Armson who finished neatly for his 14th goal of the campaign.

Immediately after the break Ben Davies was red carded for deliberate hand-ball from Connor Hall’s goal-bound header.  Shane Byrne converted the ensuing penalty doubling the lead.

Thereafter it was one-way traffic with Saints close to going further ahead through Armson whose volley was well saved by George Willis and then Armson again who shot wide after Ndlovu’s shot was parried by Wright.

With a further game on Monday Kevin Wilkin’s side was content with the three points and another clean sheet.

“In the first half they made life really difficult for us and didn’t allow us to pass the ball as fluently as we would like, “Wilkin said.  “But Lee [Ndlovu] came up with a big moment to give us that all important lead going into the break.  We didn’t look as sharp as we have done in previous games but you have to give Boston credit for that.  They kept a good shape and frustrated us.  It is a hard-earned win and it obviously got easier when we got the early second goal and they had a man sent off.” 

Brackley Town:   Lewis, Murombedzi, G.Walker, Byrne, Dean, Hall, Lowe (Myles 61), Armson (Nti 80), Ndlovu, Baker (Fairlamb 62), A.Walker.   Subs unused:  Jackson, Sterling-James.

Boston United:   Willis, Davies, Jackson, Wroe (Clare 62), Middleton, Qualter, Smith, Thanoj, Rollins, Abbott (Hawkes 85), Wright (Johnson 82).     Subs unused:   Parkin, Slew.

Referee:    Matt Corlett        Assistants:  Alan Cox and Daniel Robinson

Attendance:    755