Badgers have no answer as Nuneaton dominate

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Blue Square Bet North


Adam Walker 9

James Armson 29, 63

Ben Pugh 48


by Mark Duffy

EASTWOOD Town’s miserable form continued as they were comprehensively beaten in Warwickshire on Saturday.

In the Badgers’ first match since joint-manager Craig Armstrong left the club, Jamie Brough was in sole charge but couldn’t inspire his players into anything more than a stale display, with the hosts in control throughout.

Eastwood did, however, start off in positive fashion and Jervaise Christie created an early chance for himself on five minutes but saw his effort blocked by a home defender.

At the other end, James Armson broke forward and hit a shot straight at James Severn, but on nine minutes the hosts were to go ahead.

Ben Pugh got down the right and his cross wasn’t dealt with by the Eastwood defence, Adam Walker arriving to slide a low shot past the Badgers keeper and into the corner.

It should have been two on 15 minutes when Pugh’s long throw - a dangerous weapon throughout the match, particularly with a gusty wind - saw chaos in the penalty area and Armson’s shot was cleared off the line by an Eastwood defender and the ball was eventually cleared.

Eastwood’s Jason Bradley then saw a goal ruled out for offside a minute later after Jake Sheridan’s cross had picked him out well.

Danny Glover headed a great chance at Severn as the hosts continued to look threatening with every attack, before Eastwood lost Mitch Hanson injured on 22, replaced by Alex Troke.

A rare Eastwood foray forward saw Aaron Mitchell head wide after a cross from Paul Riley, and moments later Anthony Gregory cut inside but saw his shot blocked for a corner.

But the home side’s next attack brought their second goal. The ball found Armson on the edge of the penalty area after a break down the left, and as space opened up in front of him he placed the ball past Severn for 2-0 on 29 minutes.

Nuneaton skipper Mark Noon headed a corner over the top in a good position two minutes later, and Armson was then in the action again as he turned well before firing across goal and wide of the far post.

Pugh volleyed high and wide on 36 for the hosts, before on the stroke of half-time Eastwood were a lick of paint away from pulling a goal back.

Bradley held the ball up well and fed Sheridan 25 yards out, and after his fine curling effort came back off a post the ball evaded all interested parties on its way clear of goal.

Bradley had the first opening of the second-half but his mis-hit shot from sub Jarrod Westcarr’s cross was easily gathered by Neil Collett in the Nuneaton goal, before at the other end Severn got down low to gather Glover’s scuffed shot a minute later.

But the hosts weren’t to be denied seconds afterwards, when Pugh picked up the ball on the left-hand edge of the penalty area and drilled an excellent shot past Severn and into the far corner of the net.

Armson saw an effort go just over the top on 50 minutes, and seven minutes later Walker tried his luck from distance after dispossessing Gregory but his effort dropped just over the top.

A huge rain and hail storm then arrived to make Eastwood’s day that bit more miserable, and it got even worse on 63 minutes with the fourth Nuneaton goal.

Glover fed Walker down the right with a dinked ball through the Eastwood defence, and he in turn squared across the six-yard box for Armson to net his second.

Gregory headed a corner over the top for Eastwood as they searched for a glimmer of light through the ever-darkening clouds, and Troke saw an effort deflected wide a few minutes later.

Another Troke effort, this time a free-kick 25 yards out, was gathered by Collett with ease, and Bradley headed Sheridan’s cross straight at the Nuneaton custodian moments later with what was probably Eastwood’s best-worked chance of the afternoon.

Sub Sam Belcher curled wide on 88 for the hosts, and Glover saw an effort parried away by Severn before the afternoon was out, but the damage had been done and the Badgers were well beaten.

Eastwood: 1 James Severn 2 Mitch Hanson (Alex Troke 22) 3 Paul Riley 4 Aaron Mitchell 5 Gavin Caines 6 Steve Istead (c) 7 Anthony Gregory 8 Josh Burge (Aaron Cole 55) 9 Jason Bradley 10 Jervaise Christie (Jarrod Westcarr 46) 11 Jake Sheridan Subs not used: Danny Elliott, Jake Want. Att: 675

Best Badger: Jake Sheridan