Hot Heathens are too strong for Ardley

Ardley United's Troy Bryan escapes the challenge of Brimscombe & Thrupp's Ben Deakin

Ardley United's Troy Bryan escapes the challenge of Brimscombe & Thrupp's Ben Deakin

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Paul Davis will be looking for his side to get back on track against Highmoor-Ibis in Saturday’s UHLSport Hellenic League clash.

Ardley lost their second game in four days following Tuesday’s 3-0 premier division trip to Flackwell Heath, who look certain to be in the reckoning.

The woodwork kept Ardley in the game early on but once the first goal came it gave the hosts the confidence to go on and win comfortably.

Dan Rapley and Jamie Essex went close early on before Liam Tack saw a free-kick rebound off the bar. Essex also saw his bicycle kick come back off the woodwork.

Dan Rapley fired over as did Essex. Tack curled his free-kick over the wall and on to the bar, Essex reacted first and his overhead kick hit the woodwork.

Rapley cut in from the left before unleashing a shot that again cannoned back off the bar. A quick counter-attack saw Essex fire over before the unmarked Rapley directed his far post header straight at Lee Farrow.

Ardley almost took an unlikely lead when keeper David Lyons dropped a free-kick and Bradley Cox saw his effort blocked by skipper Ben Sturgess with the visitors appealing for handball. Troy Bryan headed against the post and Leam Howards was thwarted by a brave last ditch block as he looked to put the rebound away.

Heath broke the deadlock five minutes before the interval when Rapley ghosted in at the far post to side-foot home. Matt Cruse went close just before the break after being set-up by Howards.

Essex was denied by Farrow after the restart before Heath doubled their advantage in the 52nd minute when Essex headed home a free-kick at the near post.

Cruse volleyed over but Essex saw his diving header come back off the post and Tack allowed Farrow to save. Tack fired over before he added a third goal in stoppage-time following a quick break.