Impressive Town defeat a classy League 2 Cheltenham
By Andy Chilton
The Blues emerging squad put in a performance of determination & flowing football to defeat our illustrious visitors at an enthralled Arden Garages Stadium
Match Report by KEVIN HAND , PHOTOGRAPHS BY GRANTY
Stratford Town 2 v 1 Cheltenham Town (HT 1-0)
Saturday 13 July 2019 3.00pm Friendly
Arden Garages Stadium
• Let slip the dogs of war
Make no doubt about it, this was a proper game of football played in a tremendous spirit by both sets of players for Town’s opening home friendly. On a lovely afternoon with a good-sized and knowledgeable crowd, the ground and playing surface were a credit to the club.
Town’s starting eleven included Chris Cox, Lewis Wilson, Nabil Sharrif and Kynan Isaac from last year’s successful team. Chris Cox was at his combative best, Lewis Wilson oozed class, Sharrif a constant menace and a mature and composed Isaac as captain led the way. Tom Fishwick had a good first half and Elliot Taylor impressed in goal. The partnership of Shariff and Joel Gyasi was pleasing in the movement and fluidity they brought in leading the line. Ivor Lawton hinted at midfield quality.
And Cheltenham had brought plenty of quality with speed and power in Tahvon Campbell, Alex Addai and Rohan Ince. Exchanges were sharp, hard and fair all over the pitch and the game was managed sympathetically by the officials. Town was sharp and incisive in matching the Division 2 visitors. Town’s opener on 19 minutes came courtesy of Nabil Shariff who bullied his way into the area from left and unleashed and unstoppable right-footed shot across the keeper into the bottom left hand corner.
The second half saw a slew of substitutes for both sides but, somehow, the quality was barely diminished. Cody Fisher, James Hancocks and Dylan Parker were all keen to impress and helped maintain the intensity and tempo of he performance. Sam Lomax impressed in goal with a cool performance. It was no surprise that on 76 minutes Stratford doubled their advantage. Following a foul on the left, the free kick was met by a Louis Morrison header, and it crept tamely past a crest-fallen Robins’ keeper.
Cheltenham eventually responded in the 88th minute from the experienced Luke Varney.
• Let slip the dogs of war…………Julius Caesar Act 3 Scene 1
Worcester City Tuesday 16 July 7.45pm (H) Friendly
Aston Villa Saturday 20 July 3.00pm (H) Friendly