harriers-online match report
Vs rushden & diamonds 
Reds cut Diamonds down to size.

With the season drawing to a close The Harriers went to Nene Park, the home of their old sparring partners Rushden & Diamonds and came back with all three points.

Second half poacher goals from Appleby and Henriksen was our reward for a good showing from every one of the team.

This was seen to be our last chance to gain a bit of pride from a quickly dis-integrating play off challenge and, by God, the lads did us proud.

We were without Stamps and Broughton due to suspensions so we started with Ian Joy and Ian Foster in exchange.
Joy showed us, with an assured display, that he'll be ready to step into Stampers boots if Stamps moves onto a new club during the close season.

Foster also had a good game but he's not the same type of player as Broughton and neither is Bo Henriksen. This was the only thing missing from todays display, a big man up front.

Rushden had the first attempt on goal after two successive corners for the Harriers came to nothing with the second being cleared upfield for Onandi Lowe to rob Dean Bennett of the ball.
Lowe headed for goal but Dean Bennett made a fine recovery to return the favour and rob Lowe just as he was about to strike.

Diamonds threatened again a minute later when Andy Burgess crossed for Lowe but luckily for us he scuffed his shot and Brockie saved easily.

Diamonds came close again, this time through ex Walsall man Brett Angell. His first shot was blocked by Stuart Brock to Abdou Sall but instead of clearing it upfield he conceded possession back to Angell and this time Stuart saved well from point blank range.

Slowly but surely the balance of power changed to the Harriers.

First, a fine cross from Ian Foster was heading Colin Larkins way until a Diamonds player got in the way and headed to safety.
Then Adie Smith set Foster up with a perfectly flighted cross field pass but by the time Fozzie had got the ball under control and taken the ball past Turley in the goal the angle had become too tight and the shot went across the face of the goal.

Minutes later the angle was too tight again, this time for Larkin, when he ran onto Deano's pass and again rounded the dodgy keeper Turley. Instead of going for goal he decided to play it on for Henriksen but his pass was out of reach for the Dane.

Again we came close to opening the scoring when Foster came in from the wing, cut inside and let fly a shot that was cleared off the line with Turley beaten yet again.

Craig Hinton had now come into his own and showed us why he looks like being the No1 target for Molby at Hull.
Twice he snuffed out dangerous attacks from Rushden, first from Paul Hall when he forced him into shooting wide and then from Angell when he headed the ball away from him with the goal at Angell's mercy.

Turley had shown he was the weakest link and that was to be proved in the second half.

HT. 0-0

The second half we came out with all guns blazing and the first action was to be the wrong sort when Ian Joy fell to the ground clutching his face after an off the ball incident between him and, the frankly disappointing, Lowe.
After a bit of shoving between the teams the ref walked to his assistant and back again a couple of times and then let the game continue.

Seven minutes into the half we took the lead with one of the strangest goals ever seen.

Larkin lost possession to Wardley after going on a run. Wardley then inexplicably passed the ball back to his keeper into the path of Appleby who then took the mickey out of Turley, rounded him and popped the ball into the empty net from twelve yards out.

The Rushden fans couldn't believe it and neither could we. It all seemed to happen in slow motion.

Rushden almost drew level almost immediately.

From the restart the ball was played out to Angell who made a beeline for goal. His rising shot crashed against the underside of the bar with Brock completely beaten. The ball fell to Wardley but he couldn't put the rebound away.

That was to be Angell's last contribution to the game when he was soon replaced by Scott Partridge. He in turn found himself booked after only being on the pitch a few minutes.

Lowe had his one and only clear chance of scoring after 65 minutes when he managed to escape the grip of Hinton to fire a header against the righthand post with Brockie beaten again.

Minutes later it was all over when a long ball was chased down by Dean Bennett who, with the Rushden defence asleep, beckoned Turley out to him and then slipped the ball past him for Henriksen to simply roll it into the empty net.

There was only one team in it after that and we seemed content to play possession football with the Harriers fans cheering the good guys and jeering the bad boys if they, rarely, got the ball off us.

This was our 3rd double of the season and coming at the expense of our old Conference foes was all the better for it.

Richie Appleby had probably his best game for a while and coming after today's statement that he would like to be at Aggborough next season it was obvious that he was in a better frame of mind than since Molby left.

He still wasn't my man of the match though.

FT. 0-2

Harriers-Online Man of the Match is :

Craig Hinton

Wrapped up Onandi Lowe and slipped him into his pocket.

vote for your
man of the match now


Brock, Smith, Hinton, Sall, Joy, Appleby, williams, Bennett, Larkin, Henriksen, Foster.

Subs;   Danby, Shilton, Clarkson, Ducros, Bird.

Rushden & Diamonds.
Turley, Mustafa, Peters, Tillson, Underwood, Hall, Mills, Wardley, Burgess, Angell, Lowe.

Subs;   Butterworth, Brady, Partridge, Pennock, Setchell.

Yellow. Harriers 1. Sall.
Yellow. Rushden 2. Tillson, Partridge.

Red. Harriers 0.
Red. Rushden 0.

Mr G Salisbury (Preston).

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