Holwell Sports punished for missed chances at high-flying Radcliffe

Kieran Foster took his season's goal tally to eight at Radcliffe
Kieran Foster took his season's goal tally to eight at Radcliffe
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Holwell travelled to Radcliffe Olympic in good spirits and in form, but once again manager John Webster had to shuffle his pack.

Forwards David Hazeldine and Laithan Hammond were both missing for the trip to the top five side, while Joe Williams was feeling the effects of ta an ankle injury picked up in the midweek win at Melton Town.

The first half started evenly with both sides pushing and probing, trying to get the upper hand.

But the visitors got the break through after 20 minutes when a fantastic run by Kieran Foster was spotted by Liam Chapman.

His pinpoint pass set Foster away into the area, and his firmly struck shot into the far corner gave the home keeper no chance.

This shook the home side and but for two clearances off the line and a fantastic one-handed save from the home keeper, Holwell could have taken a much bigger lead into half-time.

Radcliffe made changes for the second half and it seemed to inspire them with Holwell very much on the back foot, but defending with real conviction to preserve their slender lead.

Holwell finally cracked with 20 minutes left when Radcliffe substitute Ryan Perkins equalised.

The hosts were now flying and five minutes later took the lead through Jake Morris after Holwell failed to clear.

And on 80 minutes the result was settled when a cross from the right found Radcliffe left-back Ryan Smith on the edge of the area, and his well-struck shot flew into the far corner past keeper Jamie Witham.

Holwell rallied a little in the last 10 minutes, but the damage had been done.

The result leaves Sports in 15th, but they will be confident of picking up points against bottom side Ellistown and Ibstock whom they meet in back-to-back fixtures over the festive period.

They host the basement side on the Tuesday bank holiday (kick-off 7.45pm) before making the return trip on Monday, January 2 (ko 3pm).

Holwell: J. Witham, A. Ridout, I. Bitmead, R. Woodcock, T. Harris, C. Hibbitt, B. Smith, K. Foster, M. Tinsley, M. Cowling. Subs: C. Cropper, M. Stevenson.