Steve's early goal is sufficient to tame the Royals
Unbeaten start maintained
Albion maintained their unbeaten start to this campaign in this the very first league encounter played between the clubs.
The only goal of the game came very early on after a low shot from skipper Anthony Brown following a corner kick had been blocked by a defender. The 6th minute seeing Steve Tames running onto a long ball down the right, drawing keeper Mason Springthorpe out and clinically lobbing the ball over the custodian’s head. (Photo above captured superbly by Trevor Senior)
The visitor’s Gurjit Singh saw his 10th minute shot blocked as they strived to get an early equaliser. At the other end though a great Jak Barnes tackle snuffed out Tames whilst Springthorpe produced a great one handed save to thwart James Foley following great approach play by Tames and Prince Haywood.
On the half-hour David Howarth was just unable to turn sharp enough for the visitors whilst Haywood, following a short corner, saw his shot strike the outside of the right upright as Witton looked to extend their lead.
Howarth’s ball across the box saw no-one following in whilst Singh’s nice turn and shot was wide of Calvin Hare’s left post. Four minutes before the break Rob Hopley worked himself into a nice position but lifted the ball over the bar.
Hare produced a great block to deny Brian Smikle early in the second half and on 55 minutes a Matty Devine corner to the far post saw Michael Wilson's low shot pushed out for a corner by a diving Springthorpe (playing in familiar territory after being with Vics a couple of years or so back).
Whilst the Royal’s won a succession of corners including when Devine was on hand to boot away a low shot for a 3rd successive corner as Sutton stepped up a gear they were unable to get on the score-sheet. They had both full back’s booked as Witton countered, on 72 minutes Haywood was brutally taken out by James Beresford on the left touch-line whilst five minutes before the end Sutton skipper Zak Martin looking tired then bundled Antony Gardner out on the opposite flank to also pick up a yellow card.
With the last real attempt on goal seeing home centre back Nick Ryan heading over a Devine corner kick the final whistle came as a huge relief as well as the three well earned points.
Witton Albion (3:5:2): Hare; Wilson, Brown, Ryan; Gardner, Haywood, Foley (Evans 83), Hedley (Williams 70), Devine; Tames & Hopley (Jones 63). Subs not used Newby & Hinchliffe.
Sutton Coldfield Town: Springthorpe; Beresford, Martin, Birch, Barnes, Kelly, Flint (Zazi 63), Smikle, Howarth, McMillan (Gabbidon 74), Singh (Wright 74) – Booked: Beresford & Martin both fouls.
Referee: Kristian Silcock Attendance: 298