Dan Chaundy comes off bench to bag decisive goal as Stratford Town Reserves edge out Redditch United
STRATFORD Town Reserves battled their way to a 3-2 win away at Redditch United with a cold and blustery wind ensuring unpredictable conditions, reports Richard Price.
Town opened their account after Adam Taylor returned a Redditch clearance with interest for Zidan Sutherland to pounce on the loose ball and fire the visitors into an early lead.
Sutherland nearly doubled the advantage moments later, only to be denied by the advancing goalkeeper and he then rattled the bar soon after.
However, with Redditch determined to wrestle the momentum from Stratford, only some sharp work from the back line of Ben Cook, Sacha Everard and Tom Traverse held them at bay.
As half-time approached, much of the action was taking place in the middle of the park, but Redditch managed to break away down the right and smashed in an equaliser.
To their credit Stratford didn’t wait for the interval and responded immediately with Odine Brown playing a cute ball that split the Redditch defence and left Cian Hodson to slot the ball home deftly for 2-1.
The attritional midfield battle continued in the second half and it was a revitalised Redditch who levelled the score at 2-2 after some impressive one-touch interplay.
Again Stratford responded positively with James Kiley, Jake Collins, Sutherland and Hodson’s industry being snuffed out in the final third by resolute Redditch defending.
With the game looking likely to end in stalemate, the introduction of Dan Chaundy proved decisive. The combative Jake Williams stole the ball in midfield and sprayed it wide to Chaundy in space on the left.
The advancing Stratford man powered the ball across the ‘keeper and into the net to deliver victory.
The Reserves host Tipton Town at the Arden Garages Stadium this Saturday in the previously postponed quarter-finals of the Birmingham FA Vase.
Meanwhile, the U18s are steadily climbing the Midland Floodlit Youth League table and currently stand in fifth place, despite being several games behind their rivals. They face testing visits away to top-two Gloucester City and Stourbridge this week in a bid to catch up.