STRATFORD Town were comprehensively beaten in their penultimate friendly at Swindon Supermarine on Saturday.
The 3-0 reverse for Paul Davis’ side at Webbswood Stadium was not what Stratford fans envisaged having dispatched National League opposition in the shape of Yeovil Town just a week earlier.
However, with no less than six changes made to that side, a result of several injuries and absentees on the day, Town failed to ever really get going in Wiltshire.
Supermarine made a statement of their intent by going in front on 11 minutes after striker Harry Williams rounded custodian Ty Belford before tapping in following a quick exchange with team-mate Connor McDonagh.
By the 25-minute mark it was 2-0 when Matt Libbiard planted a header into the net from Jamie Edge’s whipped free kick delivery – the Swindon captain making amends having struck the crossbar moments before.
Kynan Isaac almost dragged the away side back into it but fired narrowly past the post after pouncing on a defensive mistake by goalkeeper Martin Horsell before half-time.
Even with the introduction of Reece Flanagan to help shore up the Stratford back line, the visitors could not turn the tide as Supermarine continued to go to greater lengths for a third.
Their search was successful, when McDonagh hammered the ball into the top corner from Brad Hooper’s threaded ball in the 54th minute – having had an earlier goal ruled out for offside at the beginning of the second half.
Jake Lee went tantalisingly close to supplying a fourth of the afternoon for the Southern League Premier South hosts with a header which crashed against the post, before Belford kept the scoring down with a save from Michael Hopkins’ late free kick.
It was certainly not the outcome wanted with the new season fast approaching, but a final warm-up at home to Highgate United this Saturday (3pm) at least affords Davis’ men the chance to put right their wrongs before the Southern Premier Central campaign begins at home to Kings Langley a week later.