The Harriers came back from the deep, dark Forest of Dean tonight with a 2-1 win under their belts following a friendly game at Cinderford Town. Rookie keeper Steve Taylor saved two penalties and the two second half goals were scored by Jonny Harkness and Mike McGrath.
Included in the side was the former Norwich, Leicester and Sheffield Utd defender Rob Ullathorne and Dean Sturridge made his first start of friendlies.
Harriers first half team:
Steve Taylor, Ashley Edkins, Mark Preece, Neil Howarth, Rob Ullathorne, Brian Smikle, Jake Sedgemore, Jordan Fitzpatrick, Michael Blackwood, Dean Sturridge, Andy White.
It was Sturridge that was causing most problems for the Cinderford keeper during the first half but at the other end the home side was being gifted penalties by the defence. The Harriers assistant manager Neil Howarth was judged to have handled in the area but Steve Taylor saved the resulting spot kick.
The first real goal of the game came midway through the second half from the Harriers with a Jonny Harkness free kick that the keeper fumbled and allowed to roll into the net and then soon after we had wrapped the game up with a goal from Michael McGrath after he was played through by the veteran Bob Taylor.
With time running down, and the Harriers looking comfortable with their lead, the home side struck to pull a goal back seven minutes from the end. We had chances to increase our lead further through Russ Penn and Bob Taylor but then a blow was struck when Cinderford were awarded their second penalty of the evening. Thankfully Steve Taylor earned his corn once more when he again pulled out the stops to save well.
Harriers second half team:
Steve Taylor, Mark Creighton, Stuart Whitehead, Jonny Harkness, Simon Russell, Russell Penn, ? Walters, Michael McGrath, Luke Reynolds, Ashley Eaton, Bob Taylor.