Gallery: Crows go third after patient performance
Royston Town 3 Hertford Town 1 A disciplined performance from Paul Attfield s men and three second half goals saw them overcome Hertford s stubborn resilience to move up to third place in the South Midlands Premier Division. The win was even more remarkab
Royston Town 3 Hertford Town 1
A disciplined performance from Paul Attfield's men and three second half goals saw them overcome Hertford's stubborn resilience to move up to third place in the South Midlands Premier Division.
The win was even more remarkable when the Crows' injury worries are taken account, with enough of their defensive line missing to make Attfield go out and sign former Biggleswade United captain Ben Stocker during the week and throw the centre half in for his debut.
Hertford were in a determined moved to frustrate a free scoring Royston side which had bagged 17 goals in its last four league outings, and the visitors put plenty of players behind the ball and played direct balls to try and subside any pressure.
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Royston had a lot of first half possession as they moved the ball around the pitch well and laid siege to the visiting area with plenty of crosses in open play and corner routines, but the presence of commanding 'keeper Robinson in tandem with a well drilled defensive unit kept Royston at bay.
Robinson made a fine block from Luke Robins as he weaved his way into the box and just before half time superbly tipped over a dipping Ryan Lockett half volley at full stretch.
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As the half wore on Royston's approach play became a little more desperate and Hertford had their best spell of the game if only to test 'keeper Gibson once in the 38th minute when Ryan Redford's effort from a tight angle was blocked.
For only the second home league game this season Royston went into the break without a goal on the board and the opening exchanges of the second half did little to make anyone believe that the second half would be any different.
The game did come to life in the 62nd minute with a classic counter attack goal which begun deep inside Royston's half and ended with Robins' shot being blocked only for the free scoring Josh Bronti to rifle home from close range.
The goal gave the hosts a lift as gaps started to appear in the Hertford back line as the visitors looked to push on, and six minutes later Royston doubled their advantage when Robins let fly with an audacious 25-yard effort which nestled in the onion bag with Robinson motionless.
Lockett blasted an angled shot inches wide after a great pass from Carl Edwards before Ricky Young completed Royston's scoring with a close range header from Robins' pin point cross.
With the hard work done and a flurry of substitutes from the Royston manager the game's pace eased off with Hertford completing the game scoring deep into injury time with Garrity tapping into an empty net after a long shot and come back into play off the post.
Attfield said: "Hertford for me did little to suggest they wanted to win the game so it was important for us to stay patient for as long as we did before the first goal.
"The first goal was always going to be crucial and from then we looked like scoring from every attack.
"Most of the games we have played here have been very open but today was a very different affair but I felt the final score was justified and the lads did very well again."
Royston: Gibson, Endacott, Fehmi, Jones, Stocker, Collins, Edwards, Bronti (Malins), Young (Lock), Lockett, Robins (Morriss). Unused: Dolan, Williamson.