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Sidley win in the wind to maintain record

(December 05, 2015)

AFC Hastings 1 - 3 Sidley United - ESFL Division One

Sidley United maintained their perfect league record with a hard fought win in the wind against AFC Hastings.

Sidley had won the last two encounters between the sides with relative comfort and would have been confident of another success coming into the match.

However with strong wind blowing constantly across the Bulverhythe from the off both sides struggled to create many chances and the first 20 minutes were played with little goalmouth activity.

Sidley though made the breakthrough on 26 minutes. A ball forward caused uncertainty between the Hastings goalkeeper and defender, possibly due to the wind, and Ashley Elphick stole in between them and rolled the ball home to put Sidley in front.

The rest of the first half passed by with little activity of note although a scramble in the goalmouth could have given the Blues a second goal but they couldn't quite force the ball home.

Playing with the advantage of the wind in the second half Sidley remained the side more likely to score albeit without creating clear cut chances.

That changed on 56 minutes as a good move down the right hand side saw the ball crossed into the centre where Simon Corke cleverly dummied and Arron Scrace behind him smashed the ball past the goalkeeeper to double Sidley's lead.

As some tasty challenges went in, there was a flashpoint with about 20 minutes remaining which saw 3 AFC Hastings players booked as well as Sidley's John Carey.

Having been mostly comfortable, Sidley may have felt the game was petering out but on 74 minutes the home side got a lifeline. A neat move down the right saw the Hastings forward get a shot away which flew past Rogers at his near post and into the net to restore life to the game.

That goal have AFC Hastings a lift and they changed shape as they pushed forward to try and equalise. This left them vulnerable at the back but Sidley were unable to take the chances they had to seal the game.

However they did secure all three points right at the end as Lee Roberts fed Scrace who shot into the far corner with the last kick of the game to seal the win.

Tricky conditions meant that the performance was always secondary today but the three points maintain Sidley's winning run and extend the lead at the top of the table to 14 points.

Next week sees us meet AFC Hastings again, this time at home in Hastings FA cup action.

Sidley Team: Rogers, May, Aston, Copley, Eldridge, Carey, Sanderson, Elphick (Cochrane), Bailey, Corke (Roberts), Scrace.

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