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 Post subject: Billingham Town 3 Chester Le Street Town 0
PostPosted: Wed Apr 03, 2019 5:01 pm 

Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 1:23 pm
Posts: 288
BILLINGHAM TOWN (0) 3 Hutchinson 55, 61 Connor 68

Who’s going to blink first? Since Billingham lost a tense derby affair against Thornaby, back on March 2nd, neither side have given an inch. And with three games left to go, one wouldn’t be surprised if both clubs picked up all nine remaining points. However, it won’t be easy for either side as both Town and Thornaby still have two tricky games still to come on the road. On paper, and paper means very little at this stage, Billingham appear to have the more arduous task but still have the comfort zone of two points and a superior goal difference. With Thornaby, predictably thrashing Durham City 6-0, it was not only important Town were to beat Chester Le Street but to beat them convincingly. That didn’t appear to be on the cards after a tactical opening forty five minutes which left Billingham with plenty to do but if Heineken did second half’s, then surely they would base their model around Billingham Town! They do like to worry us supporters a little bit. We need not of feared for Town were excellent during the second period as they subjugated the Cestrians. For sixty minutes, Chester were more than a match, led by Craig Marron in central midfield but once Town got their noses in front, thanks in part to a formation change, thanks in part to Luke Hogan who has had to be patient and also Matty Garbutt putting in another impressive performance, then the visitors had run out of answers. To put in to context how well Billingham Town have performed this season, they have beaten Chester Le Street 7-0 over the two fixtures and the Cestrians are still fifth in the league table. Now the squad have to prepare for Redcar Athletic on Saturday whom, by the way have not lost at home in the league since October! Thornaby make the short journey north to an enigmatic Easington Colliery where literally, anything can happen. No doubt both Town and Thornaby will be keeping an eye on each other’s scores as they come in through twitter!

The Billingham management selected the same eleven that grounded out a 1-0 win at Willington over the weekend. There was one change amongst the substitutes - Mark Dixon coming in for Callum Hassan who was unavailable. Heavy rain during the afternoon had left parts of the technical area waterlogged but thankfully, the pitch was in excellent condition. The hosts began in spritely fashion - Ash Lavan volleyed over from the edge of the box, then Max Coombes had to gather Kris Summers header at the second attempt. Gradually, the visitors settled into the game and they could have taken the lead on twenty eight minutes. Kieran Megran found space on the left side but sliced his effort wide when in a good position to get a shot on target. Billingham were being made to play plenty of sideways and backward passes to Lewis McDonald, forcing the long ball which was ideal for centre backs Alexander Walker & Kevin Dixon. As half time approached, Lee Moore saw his strike blocked on the line and Elliott Beddow’s follow up was also blocked in a crowded area.


Chester produced an imaginative move on forty eight minutes. Good hold up play by Megran allowed Aaron Steavens to get a cross in from the right and Walker was unfortunate to see his header deflected behind for a corner. From out of nowhere, Billingham took the lead and after that, they never looked back. Jamie Davis supplied a sublime through ball for Craig HUTCHINSON and although Coombes saved the initial shot, the in form striker scored with the follow up. Instantly, Hogan was introduced for Lavan, allowing another change in formation and the move proved to be the correct one. Within minutes of his introduction, Hogan earned an assist as Town doubled their lead. Hogan, using his skill, raced past Callum Greaves and produced a pinpoint cross for HUTCHINSON to head home. By the sixty eighth minute, the game was over as a contest. Neat interchange play between Hutchinson and Jack CONNOR gave the midfielder time to fire past Coombes. Hogan who had taken not one, not two but three robust challenges had to be replaced by Joe Carter. Joe Hillerby, another player who hasn’t had many minutes in the legs of late had two strikes on goal, the second of which was a stinging drive that Coombes managed to palm away to safety. Chester could have ended up with a consolation goal but Andrew Clarkson’s shot was deflected off McDonald and onto the post. At full time, a convincing win: sights firmly targeted on the championship trophy!


Town: McDonald, Flounders, Moore, Connor, Oakley (c), Summers, Garbutt, Lavan (Hogan) (Carter), Hutchinson, Davis (Hillerby), Beddow. Unused: Dixon, Kirkbride.

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