Brackley sunk by Stourbridge

Brackley keeper Billy Turley
Brackley keeper Billy Turley

FOOTBALL: Tabletopping Brackley Town’s good run came to an end as they they went down 2-0 at home to Stourbridge on Saturday.

Two disputed penalties settled this close Southern League Premier Division encounter betwen Saints and Stourbridge, the West Midlands side hard on Town’s heels with games in hand following their fine run in the FA Cup.

In added time in the first half, the referee’s assistant flagged for hand-ball awarding Brackley a penalty but the chance to take the lead was spurned as Will Green’s spot-kick flew over.

As the game entered its 90th minute still goalless, Stourbridge striker Ryan Rowe and keeper Billy Turley collided and, with both players prone, referee Adam Fielding pointed to the spot. Sean Geddes’ penalty was emphatic.

With the last kick of the game the impressive Ryan Rowe doubled the lead to leave the Glassboys delirious with delight and Saints wondering what had hit them.In a game of few chances the visitors came close in the very first minute as Turley saved with his feet from Rowe. The first half was even and well contested but ended with Brackley on top, Owen Story especially dangerous on the right.

The second half saw Saints in the ascendancy but lacking the killer punch. On 48 minutes Eddie Nisevic fired wide from close range following fine work by Jefferson Louis on the right in the game’s best chance.

After the hour, play became disjointed and the game seemed destined for a draw until the final fifteen minutes when Brackley laid siege to Lewis Solly’s goal. Winning a succession of corners, Tom Marshall went close, heading just wide following good work by substitute Steve Diggin. Then came the penalty and Rowe’s second to settle it.

This was a cruel finale for Brackley, who deserved at least a point from a game of high quality.

Brackley Town: Turley, Clifton, Marshall, Palmer, J Green (Myles 45), Kemp, Story, Magunda, W. Green (Sandy 56), Louis, Nisevic (Diggin 77).

Stourbridge: Solly, Canavan, Griffiths (Mahon 87), McCone (Dovey 72), Geddes, Bennett, Smith, Broadhurst, Rowe, Billingham, Drake (Evans 69).