The Lockmen seemed to lack a certain sparkle as they fell to a comprehensive defeat by a struggling Dudley Sports side.
The visitors won a first minute corner and in response Willenhall had the first effort at goal but Liam Wilkinson saw his effort on three minutes fly wide. Mark Habbershaw showed early threat when he fired a free-kick over on five minutes before seeing his cross-shot float over four minutes later. With twelve minutes played Jamal Pinnock attacked down the left flank for the home side, his run was good but the cross failed to match as it was caught unchallenged by Joe Siddaway in the Sports goal. Remie Birch then saw his shot plucked out of the air on the quarter-hour before Wilkinson shot just wide shortly after. All the early pressure from the hosts counted for nothing as Brad Welding hit an absolute screamer on 23 minutes which simply flew into the net. The visitors then won two free-kicks, the latter of which was blasted high over by Adam Skelding. On 40 minutes the visitors doubled their lead when a break from the right wing saw Skelding picked out in the area and he netted with the aid of a deflection. The home side threatened four minutes before the break when clever play by Josh Annakin found Tony Russon who chipped just over. In the last action of the half Habbershaw produced a brilliant point blank stop from Sidaway.
HT WILLENHALL TOWN 0-2 DUDLEY SPORTS
The home side started the second-half on the offensive and had muted appeal for a penalty as Habbershaw slipped as he went to shoot, in the follow up, Annakin saw his lob drop just wide of the target. Good work again out wide from Pinnock saw a cross pick out Habbershaw but his header slipped wide. Habbershaw and Remie Birch were then involved in setting up a chance for Annakin, however, the young Lockman could only find the keeper. Sidaway was forced into conceding a flag-kick with a good low save on 56 minutes and another corner was produced before Habbershaw planted a fierce shot into the keeper’s hands on the hour mark. For all of The Reds’ good play, they fell three goals behind on 65 minutes when Stuart Hillman let fly with a speculative shot which flew in. Kyle Thompson then saw his header from a corner blocked by a defender before The Sports keeper caught the next two corners before a Willenhall free-kick was off the mark after 71 minutes. Four minutes later and a shot from Thompson was just too high. The Greens killed the tie on 77 minutes with the fourth and final goal. A speedy excursion down the left brought a smart low save from Chris Bourne, but he could do little other than palm the ball out to Hillman who rolled home the final goal. To The Lockmen’s credit, they never stopped trying, but Habbershaw saw a header wide on 80 minutes before Matt Dorgan saw his effort with a minute remaining clear the bar comfortably.