|Date||Saturday 29 March 2014|
|Match||Slough Town v Royston Town|
|Competition||Calor League: Central Division One|
For the second week running the travelling Crows surrendered an early lead to lose an important match 2-1. This week their opponents, Slough Town, were of good quality and understandably pressing for a play-off position – that now seems almost impossible for Royston to achieve.
A promising start by the visitors demonstrating alert movement and control, creating threats on the home net, was rewarded with a 5th minute goal as Ryan Ingrey headed in a Reece Dobson cross – but only 6 minutes later Slough’s first effort of the game found the net as Warren Harris’ low half-volleyed drive left Nick Thompson flat-footed.
Royston’s initial quick passing game seemed to slowly change into more log punts that the two big Rebel’s centre-halves mopped up easily and Slough’s team defending was robust and determined. A well delivered free-kick was met well by Jack Bradshaw, but his header was straight at a defender who unknowingly blocked effectively. It was mainly Royston dominating the scrappy but committed midfield tussle but then conceding cheap possession. A Reece Dobson shot went just wide and the impressive hold up play by Kaan Fehmi led to another blocked effort and it was all square at the break.
The home side dominated the second half stifling most of the Crows' forward movement with Fehmi dropping increasingly deeper to pick up the ball. Early chances from Slough showed their intent and determined defence from Bradshaw and Joe De La Salle led mainly to long clearances for the strikers to chase. A penalty shout from each team was ignored with equal disdain from the referee and a rare Royston effort, interspersing many home side chances, saw Luke Robins spin and shoot over.
A poor clearance from Thompson saw the ball lost easily and Warren Harris scored his second with a punitive downward header from a James Dobson cross that rewarded Slough for their overall pressure.
Steve Castle rang the changes with Robbie Nightingale replacing Spyros Mentis and Ryan Lockett swapping for the hobbled Ingrey. Lockett sparked Royston’s best move of the second period as his swift pass fed Lewis Endacott who sent in a lowish cross for Luke Robins to stoop and head firmly only to see Rebels keeper Jake Somerville brilliant dive and tip the ball onto the post and away to safety.
That was Robins’ final contribution as he made way for Craig Hammond but the last 15 minutes was a comparatively stagnant affair that saw no real further Royston clear-cut chances to restore parity and a jubilant Slough team celebrated an important three points.
Team: Thompson, Endacott, Dhillon, DeLaSalle, Bradshaw, Mentis (Nightingale), Collins, Ingrey (Lockett), Fehmi, Dobson, Robins (Hammond). Subs not used – Cambridge, Lawton.