Crows leave it late to steal points

PUBLISHED: 10:25 31 March 2010 | UPDATED: 16:18 11 May 2010

ROYSTON TOWN boss Paul Attfield was pleased his side managed to grind out an important victory after a below-par display against Hanwell United at Garden Walk on Saturday. Dean McElvoy put the Crows ahead midway through the first half only to find themse

ROYSTON TOWN boss Paul Attfield was pleased his side managed to grind out an important victory after a below-par display against Hanwell United at Garden Walk on Saturday.

Dean McElvoy put the Crows ahead midway through the first half only to find themselves trailing with 20 minutes to go.

But an excellent double substitution and formation change paid dividends as Ryan Locket and Tom Malins earned a valuable three points.

"One thing we have struggled to do this season is grind out results but we managed to do that today and it is a big three points for us," said Attfield.

"I think we were probably due a slightly below par performance but I was disappointed with our overall ball retention which put us under so much unnecessary pressure.

"I felt at 2-1 down it would just be one of those days but the changes we made certainly helped us in attacking areas but we still struggled to maintain the ball and the openness of the game meant it could have easily finished 6-6 in the end."

Royston started brightly and captain Ross Collins had three excellent chances to break the deadlock in the opening 15 minutes but failed to find the target on each occasion.

They did take the lead soon after, though, when Lewis Endacotts superb free kick was headed home at the far post by centre-half McElvoy.

The lead only lasted two minutes as a Hanwell defender found himself unmarked from a corner to head past Jorden Gibson.

Royston continued to look lethargic in the opening period of the second half as Hanwell looked to take advantage of the Crows unease in posession.

Mistakes continued in the home ranks and Hanwell took the lead in the 55th minute when the centre forward latched onto a through ball to slot comfortably past Gibson.

Attfield immediately made a double substitution with Ryan Lockett and Will Turl entering the fray and switched to playing three at the back.

It looked as though the change was a mistake as Hanwell had three chances to wrap the game up moments later.

However, the Crows slowly adjusted to their extra forward player and found an equaliser when Lockett smashed home a penalty after Carl Edwards was bundled over in front of goal.

Buoyed by the 200-strong support, the Crows nicked an unlikely victory when Malins headed home Locketts corner with just over 10 minutes left.

On Monday night, the Crows were denied the chance to make up further ground on leaders Chalfont when their game at Hanwell was postponed.

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