FULL MATCH REPORT
The Lockmen finally won a home game this season but they were made to battle all the way by a determined, if limited Racing Club Warwick side. Under cold conditions Harry Rickus warmed the hands of visiting keeper Ronal Dowling on four minutes, his curling effort being taken at the foot of his left hand post. Oli Manoochehri broke for the visitors on 14 minutes down the right hand side, he combined well with Jamie Delahunty, but he was robbed of possession as he burst into the box by Kingsley Burrows-Fields’ sliding tackle. Rickus was very lively for the Lockmen and on 18 minutes his clever pass found Matt Dorgan who saw his effort cleared off the line, after his initial shot was blocked at the near post. Two minutes later and Racing had the lead, a long ball forward found the ball running down the right wing, Manoochehri bounced Simon Laidley off the ball before a deft touch saw him fire low beyond Ben Holden’s reach. Four minutes later and Dorgan did well to win a header, his knock down saw Eddie Wilson shoot for goal from just outside the box, it was heading into the bottom corner before it took a slight deflection for a corner. Wilson took the kick and an overhead kick was cleared from close to the goal-line again. Mikey Clark then saw an effort fly inches wide before he was heavily involved in the equalising goal a minute later. He shot down the left leaving his marker trailing and his curling cross to the far post saw Rickus rise highest to loop a fine header over Dowling and into the roof of the net. Wilson took a free-kick after a foul on Clark but it flew over from 30 yards out. Jamie Corrigan then broke quickly just before the break down the right, he got into space and his cross-shot flew across the face of goal when any kind of touch from a couple of Warwick players would have restored their lead against the run of play.
HT WILLENHALL TOWN 1-1 RACING CLUB WARWICK
The visitors attacked first after half-time when Jamie Brown saw his 50th minute shot fly across goal and out for a goal-kick. A minute later and another ranged blast from Wilson flew just over. Sixty seconds later he again fired over before he then escaped down the left on 54 minutes. This time his cross picked out Rickus in the box but his shot was well over. The Reds kept up the pressure as Clark fed Matt Dove after 57 minutes, the midfielders shot was measured but just too high again. Warwick were trying to unpick the home defence but Manoochehri was constantly being caught off-side. When he did escape on 61 minutes without being halted by a flag Holden stood tall and did brilliantly to block the close range effort. The Lockmen were soon on the offensive and two minutes later a long range Dove shot was comfortably fielded by Dowling in the Warwick goal. Clark then left four men trailing in his wake on 66 minutes but nothing resulted and the attack fizzled out. The Lockmen finally grabbed the lead their enterprise deserved on 72 minutes when Wilson fed Dove on the left wing just outside the box, his ball in landed between sub Steven Nurse and two defenders, and it was The Lockmen who was the most determined. His initial effort was half stopped and as it rolled towards goal either he or a defender could have added the final touch in the scramble. Rickus fired at the keeper on 78 minutes before he was substituted on 80 minutes, giving young Callum Foster a chance to run at tiring legs. With eight minutes to go Warwick attacked through a run from half-way, as the tackle came in Brown who had started the move got onto the loose ball but his tired effort was just wide. Warwick won a corner on 88 minutes but this was cleared and with a minute left Willenhall sealed the win when Wilson robbed a visiting player, raced down the left before crossing for Clark to control perfectly before sliding a well-placed effort beyond Dowling, the spectacular gymnastics that followed were worth the wait for the first home win of the season and a place in the quarter-finals of the cup.
FT WILLENHALL TOWN 3-1 RACING CLUB WARWICK
By Chris Burton – Match Secretary
Reproduction by prior-consent of The Lockmen Limited t/a Willenhall Town FC only