Singleton Strikers 0 def. by Cooks Hill United 2 (Lee Ashton x2)
Sunday 10th June, 2:30 pm, Howe Park
Having been the only match of the round not cancelled due to the long weekend’s wet weather, Cooks Hill now sits eight points clear at the top of the table after defeating Singleton despite ending the game with ten men.
The match kicked off with both teams trading the momentum and squandering goal-scoring chances, but it seemed the Strikers had leaped into the drivers’ seat when Cooks Hill’s Alex Gillespie was sent off midway through the half having been deemed to have fouled as the last defender.
However, just minutes before the half-time whistle, the Cookers’ key striker Lee Ashton perched a lovely strike straight into the top corner to give the away team a surprising lead.
The second half saw Singleton throw everything they had at the league-leaders, but they just weren’t able to find a way past Cooks Hill’s defence, and as their desperation grew, so did their proneness to the counter-attack which Nick Russell took full advantage off as he delivered a perfect cross to Ashton who successfully bagged his second and the game-sealer for his side.
Cooks Hill’s coach Graham Law praised his side for collecting the three points after being reduced to ten men against a quality Singleton team.
“I was delighted with the three points against a Singleton team, that although losing, I imagine can take great heart from their performance,” Law said.
“It was a very tight game and I can see why they [Singleton] had only lost two games prior to our match.
“I’m extremely happy with how my team showed that we not only have the flair to win games but when needed, we will also roll up our sleeves and get the job done.
“Another bonus was the displays of the U/23’s players that stepped up and continually step up to first grade. I think it highlights how strong of a senior squad we have.”
Law suggested that their recent results have implanted plenty of confidence right throughout the squad as they head into the ‘business-end’ of the competition.
“We feel as though the last two games could prove to be defining moments for us in the comp.
“We were two down at Belswans, we were a man down at Singleton, and to come away with four points from those matches just installs belief in our team that we can drive in from here.”