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Harriers 2 Eastbourne Borough 1

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Date: 20-11-10gif Venue: Aggboroughgif att: 1271gif away fans: 45
Harriers keep in touch with the play-offs

gif Report by Harry Taylor
The Harriers moved up to 6th in the table following a hard-fought victory against free-scoring Eastbourne Borough today.  The home side went in a goal to the good thanks to Lee Morris' second goal of the season and this was doubled mid-way through the second half thanks to a smart finish from the departing Marc Williams.  A late onslaught from Eastbourne did follow including them getting a goal back but ultimately Kidderminster ran out winners.

Steve Burr named the same starting eleven for the third game in a row with the strike partnership of Morris and Williams hoping to trouble the Eastbourne backline.  Eastbourne left joint top-scorer Richard Paquette on the bench although he did come on later to score for 'The Sports'.

The Harriers took the lead in the ninth minute after threatening briefly early on with Morris grabbing the goal following Mike Williams receiving the ball on the left side of the penalty area and slipping a ball across goal to Morris, who with his back to goal, came out and turned to shoot across the face of goal into the bottom right hand corner to give us an early lead.

In truth this was one of the few clear chances of the half although both sides did come close with the Harriers forcing a good save from the Eastbourne keeper Rikki Banks from a Matty Blair shot from the right hand side of the area.  In fact the former AFC Telford man tore the away side to pieces at times with his burst of pace being a constant danger to the full backs.

Eastbourne hit the top of the crossbar following a shot from Jamie Taylor which was one of their best chances of the half otherwise it was Harriers who had the main grip on the game.
  HT: 1 - 0
The second half almost saw the Harriers two goals up within a minute of the restart with Matty Blair, on the left on this occasion, receiving the ball and through on goal but, as he stepped up to shoot, Ben Austin put in a brilliant sliding challenge to block the shot and deprive the Harriers of the chance to double their   In fact Austin had a decent game throughout and really stepped up to the plate in the second half.

Just after this a ball came over the top towards Morris and he won the physical battle with Matt Langston but as he got to the ball the referee brought it back for a foul.  This would have been a fair decision if he hadn't have waved play on when Marc Williams was brought down in the area mere minutes earlier for a challenge that was much the same.  Nice to see some consistency from referees!

In the 66th minute the Harriers finally got their second goal of the game.  Dave Hankin ran down the right going past three players – which was quite refreshing to see for someone who at times looks scared to attempt to go past the full back – he then slipped a ball to his outside to the onrushing Lee Vaughan who ran into the box and drove a low cross across the goal to Marc Williams who hit a firm shot into the bottom right hand corner to give him a goal on what could be his last game for the club.

It would be a shame if that was to be the case as he is starting to look much sharper when the ball is passed along the ground to him and is getting the service he desires.  But with the Wrexham manager Dean Saunders declaring that he'll be given a chance once back at the Racecourse Ground it could be unlikely that he'll be wearing the red of Kidderminster again in the foreseeable future.

This was the start of a real purple patch for the side as Chris McPhee then had a chance to get another goal under his belt when Keith Briggs fired in a free kick from the left to McPhee on the far post who met it with a diving header but it went agonisingly wide of the left hand post.

Harriers might've been going into a false sense of security as they then conceded a goal when a corner from the right went through a crowd of bodies but was met with a diving header by Richard Paquette that beat Danny Lewis easily and gave Eastbourne a hope of getting back into the game.

The Harriers players heads didn't drop and even after Marc Williams was taken off to be replaced by Jamille Matt, for his home debut, the pressure on Banks' goal wasn't over as a corner from the right by Hankin was played short to Lee Vaughan.  His delivery was easily cleared as far as Briggs 35 yards out who unleashed a fierce shot which came off the hand of the Eastbourne player in one of the most clear-cut handballs seen this season – especially when you compare it to the penalties given against Michael Briscoe and Keith Briggs this season – but the referee waved play on and from the rebound Gittings received the ball and drove a shot off the post which went away to safety.

Chris McPhee had the final chance of any note in the game to get a third for the Harriers but his header was unluckily straight at Banks and went away.

The result moves Harriers up to 6th in the table, level on points with Fleetwood in 5th, which leaves Harriers just outside the play-off places on goal difference.  The result is a positive one and if the Harriers can keep up this form and momentum then a play-off bid may not be out of the question.

With difficult fixtures against Barrow away and York (who won 4-0 away at Rushden today) coming up it'll be a test of the squad's steel and determination to see how we fare in those games.
  FT: 2 - 1

 Goals for Harriers: Morris 9, Marc Williams 67
 Goal for Eastbourne: Pacquette 71


The Harriers Online MotM is:

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Harriers  subs   cards      Eastbourne Borough  subs   cards 
Lewis     Banks  
Vaughan     Baker gif  
Mike Williams     Jenkins
Briscoe     Weatherstone gif  
Sharpe     Austin  
McPhee     Langston  
Hankin gif     Taylor  
Briggs   Johnson  
Morris     M Crabb  
Marc Williams gif     Jenkinson  
Blair gif     Rooney gif  
SUBS:       SUBS:    
Stevens     Lightwood  
Matt gif     Smart  
Wright     Paquette gif
Shaw gif     Strevett gif
Gittings gif     Brinkhurst gif  

REFEREE:
Mr C Knowles
Northants





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