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Alvechurch 1sts - Match centre

K Cook (40'), J Roberts (47')
Full time
M Blake (24')
Tue 2 Apr 19:45 - The Evo-Stik South - Premier Division Central

Alvechurch 2-1 Leiston


Roberts first goal secures win

James Roberts first goal for Alvechurch earned Alvechurch a huge three points as they came from behind to beat Leiston.

Matthew Blake's stunning 25-yard strike had given Leiston a lead but, following a Kieran Cook equaliser, Roberts composed finish extended Church's position in the play-off places to six points.

With heavy rain throughout the day and just before kick-off, the first half proved a sloppy affair but did see both teams create early chances. For Alvechurch Josh March was denied by Marcus Garnham with Jamie Willets seeing his header from the resulting corner blocked on the line. Meanwhile, up the other end Dan Crane was on hand to force Blake to hit the ball wide of the goal and make a good save from Dominic Docherty.

With the boggy pitch playing a part it was another twenty minutes before there was any other chances, but it proved to be a stunning goal. Blake picked the ball up around 25-yards from goal, turned, and curled home a superb strike past the helpless Crane. Alvechurch tried to reply but Roberts saw a shot go wide and another easily into Garnham's hands.

With five minutes of the half remaining Ian Long's side found an equaliser however. A well worked move led to Tom Turton's cross being headed in by Cook.

The home side made the dream start to the second half with through Roberts. The striker capitalised on a mix up in the Leiston defence and raced through on goal before calmly dinking the ball over Garnham and into the net. He then did well two minutes later and played the ball to March who appeared to have been fouled in the box, but referee Robbie Dadley opted to give a free-kick on the edge of the box instead much to Church's disbelief.

There was to be even more anger from the Church faithful when soon after this Roberts had a goal ruled out, with Dadley stating that Rahis Nabi had put the ball out of play. Leiston meanwhile, reminded Church how dangerous they could be with Christy Finch being denied by Crane when through on goal.

Roberts again was proving to be a thorn in the visitors side and forced a brilliant save from Garnham with little time remaining. A nervy ending ensued by Church hung on to claim the win.

The victory was a huge one and leaves Alvechurch six points clear in the play-off places with five games to go. However, no games are easy at this level starting with Saturday's visit to champions elect Kettering.

Key moments

Goal Matthew Blake scores for Leiston
Goal Kieran Cook scores for Alvechurch
Goal James Roberts scores for Alvechurch


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78:00 Sub On
Andre Carvalho-Landell is substituted on for Alvechurch
78:00 Sub Off
Tom Tonks is substituted off for Alvechurch
76:00 Sub On
Mason Sinclair is substituted on for Leiston
76:00 Sub Off
Christy Finch is substituted off for Leiston
70:00 Yellow Card
Dave Bellis is yellow carded for Alvechurch
64:00 Sub Off
Joshua Hitter is substituted off for Leiston
64:00 Sub On
Matthew Rutterford is substituted on for Leiston
61:00 Sub On
Mitch Botfield is substituted on for Alvechurch
61:00 Sub Off
Kieran Cook is substituted off for Alvechurch
47:00 Goal 2 - 1
James Roberts scores for Alvechurch
45:00 Sub On
Rahis Nabi is substituted on for Alvechurch
45:00 Sub Off
Joshua Ezewele is substituted off for Alvechurch
End of period 1
40:00 Goal 1 - 1
Kieran Cook scores for Alvechurch
35:00 Yellow Card
Tom Tonks is yellow carded for Alvechurch
34:00 Yellow Card
Joshua Hitter is yellow carded for Leiston
24:00 Goal 0 - 1
Matthew Blake scores for Leiston
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Alvechurch
  • Leiston
  • 0
  • Matthew Blake Goal 24:00'
  • Joshua Hitter Yellow Card 34:00'
  • Tom Tonks Yellow Card 35:00'
  • Kieran Cook Goal 40:00'
  • Rahis Nabi Sub On 45:00'
  • Joshua Ezewele Sub Off 45:00'
  • James Roberts Goal 47:00'
  • Mitch Botfield Sub On 61:00'
  • Kieran Cook Sub Off 61:00'
  • Matthew Rutterford Sub On 64:00'
  • Joshua Hitter Sub Off 64:00'
  • Dave Bellis Yellow Card 70:00'
  • Mason Sinclair Sub On 76:00'
  • Christy Finch Sub Off 76:00'
  • Andre Carvalho-Landell Sub On 78:00'
  • Tom Tonks Sub Off 78:00'

Team selection

  • 1. Marcus Garnham
  • 2. Kyle Hammond
  • 3. Sebastian Dunbar
  • 4. Noel Aitkens
  • 5. Joe Jefford
  • 6. Harry Knights
  • 7. Bryon Lawrence
  • 8. Joshua Hitter
  • 9. Matthew Blake
  • 10. Dominic Docherty
  • 11. Christy Finch
  • 12. Matthew Rutterford
  • 14. Mason Sinclair
  • 15. David Head
  • 16. Stuart Boardley

League round up

Other Premier Division Central results

Royston Town


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League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Kettering Town 42 94
2. King's Lynn Town 42 80
3. Stourbridge 42 78
4. Alvechurch 42 73
5. Stratford Town 42 72
6. Coalville Town 42 67
7. Biggleswade Town 42 66

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