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Sat Dec 21
15:00

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Hampton & Richmond Boro' (A)
Sat Dec 21 15:00
The Vanarama National League South
2nd
37pts

Rebels Narrowly Beaten in Essex

| League
Att: 330
Hornchurch
D Benstock (8), S Jones (43), C Cripps (79)
3 - 2
Slough Town
Gyoury (26), Winston (71, pen)
Paul Barrowcliff
Slough faced up to another trip to Essex with a match against Hornchurch, one of the contenders for the Ryman Division One North title this season.

Slough did not start brightly on a bumpy surface which suited the home side who took the lead with the first real chance of the game.

Danny Benstock, scorer of a dramatic late equaliser in the opening day clash between the two at Wexham Park, scored a similar goal to his earlier effort against Slough. Receiving the ball on the edge of the area, he struck a volley from a half cleared cross through a crowd of players and into the net past Gary McCann to put the Essex side one up after only eight minutes.

Slough never really appeared to get into the game and were struggling to break through a well organised defence with Paul Wood able to mop any balls up which did get through.

Neither side was able to create much in teh way of clear cut chances but Benstock did have a chance to double his tally for the game when he shot on the turn from inside the area, bhut his effort was deflected wide.

The Rebels got back into the game on 26 minutes with a rather scrappy goal. A Gilkes free kick fom the right wing was rolled to the edge of the area where Darron Wilkinson scuffed his shot badly but the ball bounced up high and Nick Gyoury was unmarked at the back post to volley home with Wood only able to palm the ball into the top corner.

The game descended back into largely long balls from the back from both sides as neither side could impose themselves fully on the game. Just before half time, Steve Jojnes showed why he is worth the money he is being paid at Hornchurch with a fantastic volleyed effort across the goal leaving McCann with no chance.

Slough were improved in the second half and had the majority of the play whilst Hornchurch were leading.

Ryan Williams had the opening chance of the half when Barrowcliff broke down the left wing and his cross was headed back across the goal by Williams, but his header went narrowly the wrong side of the post.

Steve Jones again caused Slough problems shortly after when a back post free kick found the big striker. His header down was dealt with by McCann under pressure.

Ryan Williams should have doubled his Slough goal tally on 55 minutes when a ball into the area wasn't dealt with by the Urchins defence, but the young midfielder could not keep his effort down as the ball bobbled just before he struck it and went comfortably over.

In an effort to get back into the game Slough introduced Spencer and Winston in place of Boot and Bubb. Spencer's first real involvement came when he broke into the area after some intricate Slough play and was sandwiched between two defenders. The linesman immediately flagged and after consulting with the referee a penalty was awarded for Slough which Sammy Winston duly dispatched sending Wood the wrong way.

Slough again though struggled to hold onto an equal score with Hornchurch as they again began to ask questions of the Rebels defence.

Jones again, who had been thorn in the side of Slough all afternoon, caused problems with his strength turning past two players, but his shot from close rrange was superbly blocked by Gyoury for a corner.

Within minutes though Hornchurch were back in front when a break down the left wing led to a low cross going all the way across the goal to find both Benstock and Cripps inmarked at the back post. Benstock was the recipient of the ball and his shot hit the post but fell nicely to a suspiciously offside looking Cripps who was able to volley home into an empty net to put the Urchins in front for the third time of the afternoon.

Slough again had to dig deep on a heavy pitch and try to find a third equaliser. Darron Wilkinson came close when meeting a Gilkes left wing cross but his headed effort again dropped narrowly wide of the post. Wilkinson again had a long range volley from a half cleared free kick saved by Wood.

Hornchurch should have extended their lead in the dying moment when sub Andrew Martin held of the challenge of Gyoury to find himself with only McCann to beat, but he put his effort wide of the keepers right hand post.

Hornchurch Line up

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