A sunny day and superb pitch greeted both teams in this crucial top of the table fixture between Hurst Green and Burscough Richmond. The sponsors’ corporate day was also being held pitchside and they were royally entertained.
Manager Seedall had to make three changes due to unavailability. New signing Rob Horn started his first game and Barnes and Steele came in, the latter after a string of fine performances for the reserves.
Kicking up the slope The Green were on the front foot immediately with Brierley causing mayhem down the visitor’s left flank and it was from one of his forays that he drove the ball home for the opener. Things got even better for the home side when marksman Alan Coar expertly lobbed the keeper to make it 2-0. The home faithful couldn’t have asked for a better start and they were in seventh heaven when Brierley again cut in to beat the keeper on his near post.
With half time looming Richmond were handed a lifeline when Edwards poked home to make the half time score 3-1.
The second half began with the visitors chasing the game and committing more men forward to the point where the villagers were having to defend for their lives. The game was back in the balance when Jones unleashed an absolute screamer from 35 yards that flew into the top corner giving Bee no chance to make it 3-2. As in the corresponding fixture two weeks ago the game was decided in one pivotal moment. Burscough sprung the offside trap and the striker took his shot early but Bee made a superb save and then performed heroics recovering to superbly save the follow up. Play immediately switched to the other end of the pitch where a mix up between the keeper and centre half allowed Alan Coar to walk in his second to make it 4-2.
Late in the game substitute Sargeson picked up the ball and beat two men before curling a delightful shot into the corner of the net to make it 5-2. There was still time for Richmond’s Kenyon to grab a consolation at the death but the home side were not to be denied what was a hard earned win. All the team played their part but special mention must be given to Keeper Bee who pulled off several fine saves during a 20 minute period when the villagers were under the cosh.
The visitors may feel the scoreline had a rather unfair feel about it, but as in the corresponding fixture in Burscough small margins decided the result. Manager Seedall was ecstatic after the match and with Poulton drawing at Dalton there’s still plenty to play for.