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Flackwell Heath (A)
Sat Sep 21
15:00

Next match

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Flackwell Heath (A)
Sat Sep 21 15:00
The Vanarama National League South
8th
18pts

Hibbert the hero as Slough leave it late

| League
Att: 244
Slough Town
Buchanan (42, 81), Hibbert (89)
3 - 2
Stourport Swifts
Insall (27), Polan (65)
Elliott Buchanan
Slough twice came from behind thanks to Elliot Buchanan's goals, before Leon Hibbert powered home a late header to secure Steve Bateman's side all three points.

It was a game which looked for a long time as if visitors Stourport would hold on for all three points, but after Elliot Buchanan’s second equaliser, Leon Hibbert powered a header towards goal from a fine Tommy Hayes corner, with the ball too quick for ‘keeper Paul Evans to keep out, to hand Slough a fortuitous, but welcome, victory.

Stourport had been first to threaten, with Nathan Jukes’ fiercely-struck free kick stinging the palms of Ricky Perks, a result of a rare mistake from Simon Sweeney. Sharif blasted a shot straight at Evans in response.

Slough were dealt a blow with just seventeen minutes played, as Ricky Perks was forced to leave the game due to an injury sustained just minutes before, when Swifts broke though and a ball across the box was just missed by striker Dan Polan, who slid in and caught the brave keeper. Jamie Jackson replaced him from the bench.

With both sides giving the ball away cheaply, and referee Simon Leaf pulling both sides up for a number of niggly fouls, the game had little opportunity to flow, and neither side looked particularly threatening, though the respective number sevens for each side, Mo Sharif and Jamie Insall, looked the most likely to create something.

Sharif was in the thick of the action as his shot deflected just wide, but moments later he gave the ball away in a dangerous area, and Stourport took full advantage by taking the lead as Chris Cornes laid the ball across the box to Insall, who drilled an effort in off the post, leaving Jackson no chance.

The visitors from north Worcestershire nearly doubled their advantage almost immediately, but Polan hit the post before blazing the rebound over from inside the area.

Slough responded with plenty of neat play from Herron, Buchanan and Jordan around the area, but were unable to find a killer ball as Stourport held firm. The Swifts had another opportunity on the break, but Cornes scuffed an effort wide of Jackson’s goal after a simple ball over the top.

Three minutes before the break though, the Rebels found a breakthrough in rather fortuitous circumstances. Elliot Buchanan latched onto Jordan’s ball through the middle ahead of the advancing Paul Evans, and with the keeper stranded, Buchanan tucked the ball into the empty net to level the scores.

The first-half action was not yet over, as Mark Benbow missed a glorious headed opportunity from a corner, whilst Slough had a great chance to take a half-time lead as Buchanan raced clear on the break before laying the ball across to Sharif, but the livewire 16-year old forward could not beat Evans. Just before the half-time whistle, Sharif fired agonisingly wide again as his search for a first senior Slough goal continued.

An early moment of controversy in the second half saw Stourport manager Neil Hunt banished from his technical area by referee Leaf. Jamie Insall wriggled free of Murphy, who appeared to be tugging his shirt, before going to ground under a challenge from the onrushing Jamie Jackson, but the referee waved play on, much to Hunt’s consternation.

Danny Jordan lobbed a shot wastefully over the bar from a fine pass by Herron, before poor defending from Murphy allowed the dangerous Insall to get in again, and he played a simple ball across goal to Dan Polan to tap in and give Stourport the lead.

Slough struggled to find a way back into the game, and the closest the Rebels came was from a long-range effort from Kean, which whistled a foot wide.

A flash of inspiration was required, and Elliot Buchanan provided it with nine minutes remaining. Benbow’s foul 25 yards out allowed the striker to bend a beautiful effort past Evans from the free-kick to level the scores again.

Both sides went looking for the win, and with just a minute remaining, Elliot Buchanan ran at the defence and had a drilled shot tipped just wide by Evans. Hibbert netted from the resulting corner and Slough survived a late scare to record a welcome three points despite not being at their best.

Stourport Swifts Line up

Evans, Jukes, Clayton, Benbow, Whital-Williams, Jones, Insall, Aldington, Polan, Cornes, Gates. Subs: Duggan, Morris, Triana, Colwell.

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