REPORT – Banbury 3 Slimbridge 1

The Swans returned home pointless from a very blustery Spencer stadium after suffering a 3-1 defeat to a very impressive Banbury United.
In front of a very large home crowd, the visitors found themselves two goals down within the first quarter of an hour.
On 9 minutes a shot from 18 yards rebounded back off the post to the waiting Zac Mceachran who fired hard and low past the helpless George Burton in the Swans goal.
The goal scorer provided the Assist for Banbury’s second goal just five minutes later when he set up Duran Martin to fire home from 15 yards as the visitors struggled to adapt to the pace of the Puritans front line.
In a response to the good start by the home side, Sam Turl went on a run up the right and his fine cross found Jack Twyman who was unlucky to see his rasping drive go just wide.
The Swans were by no means lying down as they tried to get back into the game and were creating plenty of chances themselves.
On 21 minutes good interplay by Paul Fahy and Sean Lawson resulted in another fine drive by Adam Mace go inches past the post.
Fahy then won a midfield tussle with George Nash and set Lawson away but his goal bound shot was deflected for a corner.
The Swans nearly found themselves out of the game when in the 32nd minute Darius Browne struck the woodwork with a good shot from the edge of the box.
Just before the break a back pass by Ryan Thwaite to Burton was penalised by Referee Viccars but the free kick from just eight yards out was cleared by the Swans defence.
Right on the half time whistle a good pass by Twyman to Lawson saw the latters thunderbolt of a shot well pushed round by Jack Harding in the home goal.
The strong wind failed to relent for the second half as Mace found himself being the first name in the referees notebook for a crude challenge on Miles Welch- Hayes.
On 53 minutes Fahy fed Lawson who went on a good run and delivered a accurate cross for the screaming Mace who was in plenty of space but his left foot shot was cleared by a defender.
Bridge lost their influential skipper Alex Hoyle with a hamstring injury in the 60th minute, Hoyle being replaced by Dean Turner.
Banbury tried turning the screw now in an effort to put the game to bed and a shot by Martin just shaved the wrong side of the visitors post.
The home side’s Darius Browne was next in the notebook for a high boot to the face of Turl, closely followed by the Swan’s Paul Fahy for a Nasty looking challenge on Martin.
Both teams were continuing to play good football despite the conditions as the game entered its final minutes.
In the 76th minute a free kick into the penalty area by Mace resulted in a penalty appeal for the swans as Dean Turner appeared to be felled but referee Viccars waved play on and as Banbury broke quickly upfield, Louis Joyce found himself with just keeper George Burton to beat but the custodian produced a stunning save to deny Joyce.
Five minutes later and the game was over as a cross from the left was well coverted by Martin for his second goal of the game.
In the final few minutes the Swans were awarded a penalty when Turner was upended in the box and Top goal scorer Fahy confidently despatched the spot kick to give the final score line some respectability.
Slimbridge return to Wisloe Road on Saturday when bottom of the league Bashley pay a visit, and manager Leon Sterling will be expecting his troops to bag some more points in an attempt to put daylight between themselves and the bottom of the table.

Team: BURTON,TURL,MACE,RYAN THWAITE,RICHARD THWAITE, WARD, TWYMAN, HOYLE (TURNER 60) LAWSON (JAMIE MARTIN 70) FAHY, BABATUNDE ( BROWN 50).

Man of the match..Sam Turl.
Attendance 234