Last-gasp Robins strike sends Crows top
Royston come back from half-time deficit
Evo-Stik Southern Central Division
Royston Town 3
Beaconsfield SYCOB 2
FOR the second game running the never-say-die attitude of Royston Town turned a half-time deficit into an exciting victory with Luke Robins scoring twice in the last 10 minutes to lift his side to the top of the table.
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Caretaker manager Duncan Easley was forced to field a changed line-up due to injuries, illness and suspensions, drafting in cover from the reserve team, but the team produced a winning performance nonetheless.
Beaconsfield took the lead on six minutes when slack defending saw Jordan Ajanlekoko strike home from close range but Royston bounced back almost immediately when four minutes later a fine through-ball by Robins saw Ryan Lockett beat the offside trap and slot the ball low past the advancing Jonathan Nydell in the visitors’ goal.
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However, poor marking from a free-kick straight after the restart saw the Rams re-take the lead as Anthony Page placed a firm header high into the top right corner past the diving Will Norris. Beaconsfield could smell blood and almost immediately they had another effort saved by Norris and the resulting rebound headed off the line.
The game settled down with more committed action in the midfield with half-chances for both teams. Tempers frayed on 35 minutes when a dangerous tackle by Craig Carby on Ross Collins saw the Royston skipper react and the following melee was eventually calmed down by persistent referee whistling, resulting in a yellow card for both players.
Royston came out the livelier in the second half but despite being a lot more positive the first 20 minutes of play was scrappy as Beaconsfield looked to break up the Royston attacks by any means possible and seemed happy to sit back on their slender advantage.
A change was made on 62 minutes with reserve team striker Dalton O’Brien replacing the understandably rusty Lewis Endacott and this added energy and impetus which seemed to spur the Crows on.
O’Brien’s first involvement saw him feed Robins for a first-time shot that went over the bar and the increasingly lively Robins saw another effort well saved by Nydell.
The Crows were in the ascendancy as the Rams sat back and a Lee Wilson long-range shot went wide, and an O’Brien twist and shot was blocked and a Ross Collins’ drive caused a half shout for handball but forced another corner.
From this Lockett corner Robins soared above his marker and headed the ball high into the Beaconsfield net.
Royston pushed on for a winner and the last 10 minutes produced an exciting finale. With the visitors rocking and 90 minutes gone Robins struck a shot worthy of winning any game and he saw his left foot power drive curl away from the keeper into the top left corner to the wild delight of the home crowd.
Royston Town: Norris, Parr, Wilson, Bradshaw, DeLaSalle, Spencer, Collins (c), Edwards, Endacott (O’Brien 62), Lockett, Robins.
Man of the Match: Robins