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Match Report  |  Gresley Rovers vs Raunds Town

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17th September 1991

Gresley Rovers vs Raunds Town

Blown away - Andy Parker - Burton Mail

Raunds Town are used to playing with a stiff wind whistling across their pitch. But at the Moat Ground last night the United Counties outfit were hit by a South Derbyshire whirlwind.

It came in the form of Gresley Rovers' cohesive and sustained attacking performance of the season thus far. Rovers could have had a hatful.

As it was, Raunds all but rode the storm only to be finally blown away by two goals in as many minutes from Paul Acklam midway through the second half.

Manager Frank Northwood said afterwards: "Everyone thought it would be a foregone conclusion tonight but Raunds certainly made a game of it. They could even have taken a shock lead but in the end we won the battle and our goals had to come."

The United Counties League side certainly did well to survive Rovers' early onslaught. Keeper Simon Payne, after a nervy start, had to find his touch quickly has his goal came under siege with Carl Rathbone and Craig Weston constantly seeking openings and full back John Barry getting forward to add to the mayhem at every opportunity.

Rovers, though, were unable to cap their dominance with a goal and it was the visitors who went closest before the break, John Arundel, completely unmarked when Julian Capone's cross escaped the prohibition of Gresley's defence, heading against the bar then astonishingly blasting the rebound high over the top from eight yards.

Rovers momentum was further impaired when Rathbone limped off with a deadleg and the home side's early cohesion was beginning to slip away when they finally went ahead.

Dean Page, excellent throughout at the back, pumped a free kick from deep on the left high into the penalty area and Acklam, rising at the far post, saw his header loop up off a defender to leave Payne helpless.

Two minutes later Richard Denby opened up Raunds with a superb piece of skill, changing direction in mid-stride to wrong foot the defence. Kieron Smith was given time and space to fire in a low shot and, when the ball came back off the inside of a post, Acklam was quickest to the rebound and lashed the ball home from an acute angle.

Gresley Rovers (0) 2

Raunds Town (0) 0

Scorers: Acklam 70, 72.

Gresley Rovers: Aston, Barry, Dick, Denby, Land, Page, Weston, Evans, Acklam, Rathbone (Smith 38), Lovell (Beresford 69).

Raunds Town: Payne, Jordan, Lewis, Bird (Field 75), McCabe, Cooksley (Boatswain 45), Arundel, Torrance, Capone, Murphy, O'Keefe.

Gresley man-of-the-match: Dean Page.

Referee: G R Hamblin (Birmingham).

Attendance: 644