Gallery: Crows promotion woe
PUBLISHED: 11:12 07 April 2008 | UPDATED: 15:43 11 May 2010
Royston Town 1 Arlesey Athletic 2 ROYSTON Town s hopes of promotion are in serious doubt after they slipped to a disappointing home defeat to Arlesey Athletic. With two games left, promotion looks all but over for The Crows , and it will be if league l
Royston Town 1 Arlesey Athletic 2
ROYSTON Town's hopes of promotion are in serious doubt after they slipped to a disappointing home defeat to Arlesey Athletic.
With two games left, promotion looks all but over for The Crows , and it will be if league leaders Kentish Town win against Bedford on Wednesday and second-placed Hoddesdon take four points from their next two games.
Haringey Borough also remain in the hunt too, with six games to play.
On Saturday, Royston's push looked firmly on track when right-back Peter Chappell turned the ball home following Chris Hardy's knockdown after just 10 minutes.
And with the visitors offering very little threat early on, it was seemingly only a matter of time before Paul Attfield's side added to their account.
However, they never really got going, with only a Luke Robins effort testing Arlesey keeper Scott Waters after half an hour.
He then denied Craig Hammond just before the break, palming the Royston striker's low drive around the post.
In the second half, The Crows came out strong, with Hammond blazing over from the edge of the box and Hardy going close with a powerful header.
However, it was Arlesey who made the breakthrough with their first real effort of the game, when Lee Shambrook lashed home a brilliant angled volley from the left following Jordan Gibson's punched clearance.
Royston responded well though, and they should have gone in front when both Hammond and Robins wasted two glorious opportunities on the hour mark.
Carl Edwards then missed another good chance for the hosts when he raced onto Robins' reverse pass, with Tom Galvin failing to hit the target from the rebound.
And it looked increasingly likely that The Crows would be left to rue those chances, with Arlesey striker Terry Lock growing in confidence at the other end.
The lively striker almost put his side in front when he pounced on Chappell's poor goal kick and fired a rasping 20 yard strike. Fortunately, Gibson was on hand to turn the ball wide with a brilliant save.
Defender David Cain then went close for Royston when he met Liam Beaumont's deep free kick, before Hammond tested Waters with another low drive.
But with just eight minutes on the clock, Shambrook broke down the middle for Arlesey, and after beating two players played a clever through ball into the path of Lock, who made no mistake lifting the ball over a stranded Gibson.