Gallery: The Vine Boost Championship Hopes
THE Vine gave their championship ambitions a timely boost on Saturday with an opportunistic 3-2 victory over Witchford 96 in the BIS Division 2B. Though Witchford arguably had the better of the exchanges, it was the visitors who would win the day with a l
THE Vine gave their championship ambitions a timely boost on Saturday with an opportunistic 3-2 victory over Witchford 96 in the BIS Division 2B.
Though Witchford arguably had the better of the exchanges, it was the visitors who would win the day with a level-headed display that was typified by some clinical finishing.
Vine assistant manager Jon Cutter, said: "We're delighted with the victory against a dangerous Witchford side.
"We know we didn't play as well as we are capable of on Saturday, but to win the game shows our great team spirit and determination to win promotion this season."
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After a sluggish start, the match was jolted into life on five minutes after Witchford's Adam Richardas found himself through on goal. Despite rounding the keeper however, Richardas fired over from a tight angle to the frustration of the home faithful.
As the half-wore on Vine gradually began to grow into the game and had an ideal opportunity to take the lead on the half-hour mark as Grant Spencer played in Gurkinder Mann. Fortunately for Witchford though, Mann's chipped effort was cleared off the line.
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With five minutes of the half to go, the deadlock was finally broken as a floated cross was met by a Witchford striker, who nodded home at the back post under pressure.
The lead was short-lived however, as Dan Cowley broke through a number of Witchford tackles to cross for James Angier who poked home.
Matters soon worsened for the home side as a mistake by the goalkeeper handed striker Jon Cutter the simplest of tasks to round the ailing keeper and slot home.
Witchford rallied at the break and came out firing for the second-half, securing an equaliser just three minutes after play resumed as Michael Ward nodded home from 10 yards.
The home side kicked on in the aftermath of the goal and began to dictate the play as their lively widemen kept the Vine defence occupied.
Their hard work was quickly undone though, as a superbly accurate Vine corner was met by Grant Spencer, who finished well to hand Vine the lead in the 65th minute.
With five minutes remaining, the home side were gifted a glorious chance to level the scores but the normally ruthless Ward drilled wide with only Adam Novak in the visiting goal to beat.
The win moves The Vine up into fourth position with 16 points to their name, just four points behind leaders Doddington with three games in hand.