Redditch United 3
Stratford Town 2
CARL Adams was left perplexed after seeing victory turn into defeat as Stratford Town ended their bank holiday Monday derby visit to Redditch with nine men.
Two smartly-taken goals from Edwin Ahenkorah on his return to his former club had put Town 2-1 ahead at half-time and looking in control.
But Stratford just couldn’t maintain the momentum and two goals from Reds captain Daniel Dubidat sent them to defeat.
To make a bad day worse, midfielder Joe Halsall was shown a second yellow card by referee Robert Hathaway for what Adams insisted was a fair challenge in the 89th minute and then Tyrone Fagan was red-carded for kicking an opponent in the melee afterwards.
“Terrible” was the word Adams used to describe the ref’s performance as he booked another seven players from both sides.
“The ref was gunning for us but I’m not going to harp on about it,” said Adams. “It was a game we lost when it was a game we probably deserved a point at least.
“In the first half we were really at it and well worth a 2-1 scoreline. In the second half, do you give Redditch a little bit of credit? Probably. But I don’t think my boys came out as well as they had in the first half.”
Town were becoming more and more of a threat early on as Ahenkorah threatened with two good efforts but it was Redditch who found the net first.
Kyle Haynes cut the ball back from the right on 24 minutes and Jordan Archer got ahead of his marker to slot home.
Within a minute, however, it was 1-1. Ahenkorah burst forward down the right and faced with two defenders he guided a low shot via the far post into the net.
The summer signing added his second five minutes later with a well-worked effort. Ahenkorah started the move, found Rob Thompson-Brown on the left and then ghosted into the near-post area to apply the finishing touch.
Redditch, however, upped their game after the break – Reds boss Liam McDonald revealing afterwards he had dished out a half-time rollicking – and their pressure was rewarded on 65 minutes. Luke Shearer’s foray down the right was halted by Sam Adkins’ lunge just inside the area and Dubidat fired the resulting penalty past keeper Andy Kemp.
Dubidat bagged the winner 14 minutes from time when Jamey Osborne curled in a corner from the left and the No 9 applied the near-post finish.
Stratford: Kemp, Moran, Adkins (Fagan 81), Simpson, Francis, Hadland, Tulloch, Halsall, Ahenkorah, Thompson-Brown, Angus (Moses-Garvey 73). Subs: Price, Sheldon, Delfouneso.