REPORT: Hednesford Town 0-2 Gainsborough Trinity
Goals from Simon Russell and a first of the season for Jake Picton were the difference, though Trinity could have had more;as they created plenty, both in open play and from set pieces.
Tom Thorley was the first to go close for the home side, played neatly in through the centre, but the returning Pitman on the stretch poked his effort wide of Jan Budtz’s goal.
Nathan Jarman then saw his effort beaten away by Dan Crane after good link up play with his strike partner Craig Reid.
Finding the front men early and linking well with supporting wide men and midfield runners, Trinity began to assert themselves and the visitors began picking up more of the second ball, which led to Jarman flashing an effort narrowly wide of the upright with Crane scrambling across his goal.
Dom Roma was incensed soon after, when arriving late at the far post he appeared to be impeded unfairly, but no decision was forthcoming.
Trinity continued to threaten, zipping balls across the box from both flanks, Stephen Brogan and Picton just failing to connect from separate centres.
Budtz ensured parity just before the interval denying Tom Peers, as somehow the first half remained goal-less.
Starting the second-half on the front foot, Jarman’s effort was blocked and cleared following a Courtney Wildin long throw, the Sheffield Wednesday loan man making his last appearance for the club before stepping up a level to continue his development.
Brogan and Simon Russell then combined down the left hand side, Russell beating his man and sending in a cross that was fractionally too high for Reid who was unable to guide his header on target as he got across his man.
Peers then did brilliantly on the right to beat his man but Budtz was alert to claim the low centre as Danny Glover’s eyes lit up.
Jarman and Reid combined again well from a long Budtz punt down field. But with Crane diving full length to his right, the ball drifted harmlessly wide of the right hand post.
Glover played in Peers as the referee looked to play a good advantage, but Budtz was quickly off his line to knick the ball off the toes of the Chester loan man, Josh Lacey sweeping round to clear the danger.
The hosts went close when Kennedy Digie was first to the ball, his header finding Glover. The former Telford man spread the play brilliantly to the left and Shelton Payne who cut inside only to see his deflected effort bizarrely end up in a goal kick to the visitors.
A good ball forward was then taken down by substitute Ahmed Obeng and as he slid the ball in for Peers, Blues skipper Roma came across to snuff out the danger.
Trinity were next to go close to breaking the deadlock. Jarman’s cross with the outside of his right foot was just too high for the onrushing Reid after good harrying from Jonathan D’Laryea kept the pressure on the home side, high up the pitch.
With the ball starting to stick up front, it allowed Russell the opportunity to get beyond the forwards and it was on one such occasion that a slide rule pass found him through on goal with only the ‘keeper to beat. The in-form midfielder calmly rolled the ball into the corner past the helpless Crane.
Crane did well soon after to tip away a ‘Vardy-esque’ Jarman snapshot as Trinity started to crank up the pressure. Picton then went close, stinging the hands of Crane with a fierce drive following a deep Brogan corner.
Another corner for the visitors saw Roma have his effort clawed away by Crane but Picton was on hand to rifle home Trinity’s second and make the game safe, much to the delight of the travelling support.
Hednesford Town: Dan Crane, Adam Thomas, Jack Truelove, Kennedy Digie, Phil Trainer (Ben Bailey) Tom Peers, Tom Thorley (Ahmed Obeng), Danny Glover, Sean Williams, Shelton Payne (Paul Ennis). Subs not used: Lloyd Ransome, Matt Regan
Gainsborough Trinity: Jan Budtz, Dominic Roma, Josh Lacey, Courtney Wildin (Liam Davis), Jonathan D’Laryea, Jake Picton, Simon Russell, Stephen Brogan, Craig Reid (Darryn Stamp), Nathan Jarman, (Marc Newsham) Jamie Yates. Subs not used: Charlie Binns, Adam Quinn
Referee: R Wild