Calor Gas Southern League – Div 1 South & West.
Fleet Town 0.
Cirencester Town 1.
AIDAN BENNETT came off the bench to score an 84th-minute winner with his first touch as Cirencester Town extended their winning sequence to five games.
Ciren, with Lee Smith and Steve Davies again a handful, created enough chances to have seen off Fleet Town much earlier, but it was not until Bennett’s entrance that they secured all three points.
Brian Hughes’s side have moved up to sixth in the table, but now take a break from league action with County Cup and FA Cup clashes in the next week.
Cirencester enjoyed plenty of possession in the first half and their resolute defence, with Leigh Henry and Chris Holland starring, restricted the hosts to efforts from distance.
The two best scoring opportunities came late in a half which was nonetheless full of endeavour. In the 42nd minute, Sam Collier, who was once again working the opposition centre backs hard, received the ball with his back to goal before swivelling and shooting from the edge of the six-yard box, with the strike being deflected for a corner.
Fleet responded with a break down the left wing that saw Craig Stanley cross for Simba Mlambo to head wide of the right post when well placed.
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In the second half, Mlambo could again perhaps have done better when running on to a long ball over the top before over-hitting his attempted lob as keeper Glyn Garner was charging out to block.
Ciren had a similar chance when Davies outsped the defence before his chip from 30 yards just drifted wide of the right post with Pryce stranded way out of his goal.
Fleet’s first serious effort on target came in the 77th minute but Garner proved up to it, pulling off a sensational save to palm away a superb curling effort by Danilo Cadete which was destined for the top right hand corner .
Then, six minutes from time, Bennett collected a pass from Davies and drove into the left side of the area before striking the ball with his left foot across the keeper and inside the far post.
Into stoppage time, Jody Bevan was unlucky not to make it 2-0 as his shot from a narrow angle was parried by Pryce before rolling along the goal line with no one on hand to finish.
Despite an extraordinary eight minutes of added time, Cirencester were able to hold out for another satisfactory win.
Cirencester Town: Garner, Dunton, Beeden, Mortimer-Jones, Holland, Henry (capt), Bond (Beven, 74), Hooper (Liddiard, 74), Collier (Bennett, 84), Davies, Smith. Unused subs: Bromley.
On Tuesday night, Cirencester travel to Bristol Rovers for the Gloucestershire Challenge Trophy tie, and then it’s the FA Cup 2nd Qualifying Round clash at home to AFC Portchester on Saturday, September 28.