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Match Report


Posted Sat 05 Sep 09 at 17:02 PM

FULL TIME: Harriers 0-2 Eastbourne

Harriers slipped further off the early pace in the Blue Square Premier as Eastbourne picked up three points at Aggborough in a 2-0 smash-and-grab on Saturday afternoon.

It was the visitors who had the first chance of the day with barely a couple of minutes gone when Simon Weatherstone's long-range drive forced Dean Coleman into a good save.

Returning from injury it was Robbie Matthews who had the home side's first opening - he ran onto a lose ball just outside the area and hit an effort towards goal that stopper Michael Jordan gathered up. Unfortunately for the front man that was to be the total of his afternoon, replaced after 16 minutes by John Finnigan with injury striking again.

In the 23rd minute Harriers went within a lick of paint of opening the scoring as they dominated the early stages - Kyle Hadley's super ball was lofted straight onto the head of Chris McPhee who struck the bar from close-range. McPhee went every bit as close moments later, a driven low shot saved well by the feet of Jordan.

Failure to take those chances once again cost dear, though - Eastbourne stole ahead with a rare attack on 37 minutes; Jamie Taylor's low ball found its way across goal and to the feet of Nathan Crabb who made no mistake in driving the ball past Coleman.

Harriers started the second half looking to try and break down a Boro side now content to sit on their lead, but as with the first half it was again the visitors who created danger at the other end - after 57 minutes only Martin Riley's last-ditch tackle stopped Andy Atkin from doubling the score.

Three after the hour the ball ran to Barnes-Homer on the edge of the area - he set himself and readied for the shot but the contact wasn't as he'd have liked and the effort went some way off target.

With a little over 20 minutes to go Hadley raced away out wide after a rare Boro slip - with options abound, though, he took the wrong one in shooting himself, the effort some distance off target.

A few minutes later his fellow winger Smikle went a little closer with a rising shot from distance which beat Jordan but went just over the bar.

As the half wore on it was clear that, Boro's goal aside, it was a game of attack versus defence but Harriers just couldn't break their opponents down - Garry Wilson's side looked to sneak through any gap in the home line but Lee Baker's goal line clearance and a super Coleman save ensured there was just one goal in it.

Dean Bennett tried his luck just a few minutes from time with an effort from distance but again Jordan was comfortable - sub Knights then forced him into a low save as injury time got underway.

The three points were secured for hard-working Eastbourne in the dying seconds - Taylor finishing powerfully past Coleman before wheeling away the delight of his team mates and supporters.

Again it was a performance of work-rate and endevour but lacking in penetration - Harriers will at least have time to try and put it right in quick style as Mansfield Town visit Aggborough on Tuesday night (7:45pm).

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