14th Dec, 2019

Inconsistent Town are urged to learn quickly

Stratford Editorial 29th Aug, 2019

TOMMY WRIGHT says Stratford Town will need to learn from both the positives and negatives from a roller-coaster bank holiday weekend.

Town were a high on Saturday after ending then table-toppers AFC Rushden & Diamonds’ 100 per cent start with a 3-1 home win.

However, they were then punished for defensive lapses on Monday as hosts Rushall Olympic powered to a 4-1 victory to sit top of the Southern Premier Central table.

Wright felt 4-1 flattered the Pics but he urged his side to learn the lessons as they prepare to face Biggleswade Town at the Arden Garages Stadium on Saturday.

Only basement side Leiston have a worse goals-against record than Town.

“It’s the basics of defending that we’re not doing,” Wright told the Stratford Town Independent Supporters Association website.

“We didn’t show enough desire to keep a clean sheet and I was particularly disappointed with their first three goals.

“The first was a header from a corner, the second had two of their players on their own in our six-yard box and the third was from a throw-in.

“They took their chances with some clinical finishing and we didn’t. We probably should have had one before they scored as our lads all thought Nabil Shariff’s header was over the line, but every time we’ve had a positive spell they’ve scored.

“That’s what good teams do – they weather the storms and come back.”

Stratford felt Shariff’s header from Mitchell Glover’s corner crossed the line after bouncing down from the underside of the bar after just five minutes but Rushall were ahead five minutes later when Lee Smith nodded home from a corner.

Town levelled when Glover smashed home a rasping strike from 20 yards on 19 minutes but Jonathan Letford restored the hosts’ lead with a neat back-heel from a Levi Rowley cross on 28 minutes.

Letford made it 3-1 with a smart shot on the turn on 67 minutes and former Redditch player Shaquille Leachman-Whittingham bagged a fourth in stoppage time.

On Saturday, Stratford showed exactly what they are capable of by overwhelming visitors Rushden.

Former Diamonds forward Chris Wreh, handed his chance to start, led the way with two goals in the best display so far this term.

The opener came just past the half hour when the striker snaffled the ball from Jack Ashton and slotted past keeper Ben Heath.

Wreh was involved in the second three minutes into the second period when Glover tried to reach his pass and was flattened to earn a penalty. Callum Ball sent Heath the wrong way with the minimum of fuss.

It was 3-0 ten minutes from time when Wreh raced away on to Glover’s through ball and finished emphatically.

The only disappointment for Town came in injury time when the ball glanced off defender Tom Fishwick for an own goal to deny the hosts a first clean sheet of the season.

Town have been handed a home tie with Stourport Swifts or Boldmere St Michaels in the first qualifying round of the FA Cup on September 7.

Meanwhile, Kynan Isaac has left Town to join Division One Central side North Leigh.

“I’m disappointed and feel a bit let down if I’m honest, but he’s made a career choice to play at a lower level and if that’s what he wants to do then so be it,” added Wright.

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