Holwell Sports slump to second-bottom after Holbrook defeat

Simon Daws EMN-150712-173225002
Simon Daws EMN-150712-173225002
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Just as it seemed the gloom was beginning to lift, Holwell turned in one of their worst performances of the season on Saturday at Holbrook.

The 5-1 defeat extended their winless run to 16 matches in league and cup and saw them slide to second-bottom of the East Midlands Counties League.

If the visitors were looking for a clean sheet that luxury was dispelled within 20 seconds as Holbrook ran up the field and scored one of the quickest goals of the season as Stephen Akers’ shot was deflected behind latest makeshift keeper Cameron Corkett.

Holwell were not at the races in the first half as wind-assisted Holbrook made full use of the gusty conditions.

It was 2-0 after eight minutes when Fred Daws conceded a penalty for a challenge on Akers and Niall Mather dispatched the spot kick.

Holwell were trying to set Joachim and Wells away with long balls out of defence and on 18 minutes the former Leicester City ace had a chance but the ball was turned away for a corner.

Things grew wore on 20 minutes when Holwell conceded another self-inflicted penalty when Bitmead was caught out on the by-line by Harris who kept the ball in play before being clumsily brought down. Mather duly made it 3-0.

But for poor finishing and eagerness to get on the scoresheet, Holwell could have been five or six behind by half-time.

And just as it looked as though they had stemmed the flow, Ross Coxon stooped to chest in a speculative cross from the right (4-0).

A beleaguered Holwell took to the pitch for the second half, at least with the wind in their favour.

And Simon Daws’ side started the better, forcing a good save from Graves within a minute as he parried a Michael Stevenson shot away for a corner.

Holwell gave themselves a glimmer of hope when Graham Wells headed in Joachim’s cross six minutes in.

Any slim comeback hopes were dashed within two minutes when substitute Ryan Baker collected the ball on the halfway line. While Holwell defenders complained the ball had gone out, his pace took him past two defenders before squaring the ball for Ross Coxon to slot home his second.

Holwell had some chances to atone for the poor first half, winning a series of free-kicks on the edge of the box, but all were defended or wasted.

Tom Barnard was given a half-chance late on, but Graves saved at his feet, while Bitmead’s goalbound header was cleared for another corner.

The visitors had a better second half, but the four-goal start was way too big to claw back and the result another disappointing defeat.

Stevenson and Joachim still try to get things going with their superior skills and it is good to see Wells back in attack.

Bitmead, Hallam and Purkis, along with Drake and Barnard, also put in sterling shifts, but some are still struggling at this level.

Holwell: C. Corkett, G. Drake, I. Bitmead, M. Hallam, L. Purkis, M. Stevenson, T. Barnard, F. Daws, B. Smith, J. Joachim, G. Wells. Subs: T. Harris, M. Lowe.