Royston Town defeat nine-man Ware to keep title hopes alive

Ryan Ingrey

Ryan Ingrey - Credit: Archant

Royston Town remain hot on the heels of the Southern League Division One Central top two after a staunch come-from-behind derby win over nine-man Ware at Garden Walk tonight (Tuesday).

With the league’s top five teams all in action this evening, unexpected dropped points for current leaders Kings Langley at bottom side North Greenford United could have swung the title race back in the Crows’ favour but it was not to be.

For now, Royston are still doing what they have to do though but for 45 minutes they made hard work of this Ware challenge.

The visitors entered the match on a two-game winning run but having sidestepped Ken Charlery’s men 4-1 back in February, the home side were confident that could net another three points.

That confidence was rocked when Josh Oyibo thumped a 30-yarder past custodian Ron Yates on 22 minutes.

Town pressed and probed and finally on the stroke of half-time, Rhys Hoenes’ flick-on found Ryan Ingrey and he buried a left foot shot beyond Tom Coulton for 1-1.

On the hour Royston were ahead. Scott Bridges’ 20-yard free-kick was blocked by the away wall but as he pounced on the loose ball, Dernell Wynter clumsily stalled his progress just inside the box. Up stepped the skipper to ram home the penalty.

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Seconds later, a ridiculous flying elbow from Khale DaCosta during the Royston celebrations saw him walking back to the dressing rooms having been dismissed.

That wasn’t to be the end of the drama as 17 minutes from time, substitute Justin Leavers also saw red after a late challenge on fellow sub Jack Bradshaw. A slightly harsh decision but one that put Steve Castle’s men further in control.

Three minutes later, the home side were awarded a second penalty as Ingrey was felled by Murat Karagul but Bridges’ latest effort shaved the top of the crossbar before bouncing over.

Nevertheless they were to grab a third goal late on.

Substitute Simon Thomas looked to have fouled keeper Coulton when climbing to head Ingrey’s chip into the net. However, the referee saw nothing untoward from the former St Albans City frontman’s efforts and his nod was credited.

With Town five points off Langley with only two games remaining, failure to beat Aylesbury on Thursday night would mean they will require the playoffs in order to claim promotion this season.