Hednesford Town’s indifferent start to the league season continued with a disappointing performance at Banbury United, ending in defeat after a goal in each half from the hosts.
A promising start saw the Pitmen dominate the opening fifteen minutes with Callam Mendez-Jones’ far post header forcing a save from Jack Harding, before some skilled trickery from Dan Turner earned a corner, from which Danny Glover’s header was deflected onto the crossbar.
Against the run of play, Banbury broke with pace down the right with Alex Henshall producing a wonder strike to give the home side an unexpected lead in the 20th minute. The Puritans looked to build on their lead forcing Andy Wycherley into action to keep the Pitmen in the game with two excellent saves. Jack Harding dived at the feet of Turner, claiming the ball, when the Pitmen striker was through on goal; the half-hearted shouts for a penalty were waved away by the referee. Jack Hallahan went wide with a long-range effort after a spell of pressure from the Pitmen. The half ended with a shove from Turner into the back of Harding.
Both goalkeepers made important saves during the opening spell of the second half. Firstly, Wycherley saved from Giorgio Rasulo before Harding made a timely stop when George Cater played Turner in on goal.
The game turned in favour of the hosts in the 74th minute when Danny Glover was sent off for a handball offence, scooping the ball away from the goal. Wycherley made a double save to keep the penalty out, however this did not rally the Pitmen for a fightback. In the 84th minute Kelvin Langmead emphatically headed home from a corner to put the game out of Hednesford’s reach.
Banbury United; Harding, Self, Brown, Henshall, Langmead, Westbrook ©,Awadh (Landers 87), Rasulo, Constable (Johnson68), Haysham, Finch. Subs not used; Hawtin, Heap, Endall
Hednesford Town; Wycherley, Griffiths, Campbell-Gordon (Lycett 78), Bailey ©, Mendez-Jones, Thompson, Cater, Hallahan (Smith 87), Glover, Dodds (Norcross 63), Turner. Subs not; Dawes,