Tamworth FC v Hitchin Town
On the back of the midweek FA Trophy victory over Gainsborough Trinity, Dennis Greene made no changes to the starting XI to face second from bottom Hitchin Town – the first ever meeting between the two clubs. On the bench Jordan Clement returned alongside Cameron Johnson with Akwasi Asante not featuring.
The Lambs got the game underway attacking the Castle End in the first half, and in the fifth minute Waite drilled the ball across the box from the right but Verma was unable to get a boot to it to divert it past Johnson.
Gough tried a shot from distance on 8 but lifted it high over the target and in the next move Forde ran through and beat Kettle to advance into the box forcing Singh to come out and he was adjudged to have clipped the Hitch forward so a penalty was given.
Bickerstaff stepped up and struck the ball low to the keeper’s left but Singh did magnificently to push it around the post for a corner.
The flag kick was cleared and The Lambs survived a possible early set back.
Then on 15 a ball through middle was flicked on by Verma and Lait pounced in the box to rifle his shot past Johnson and give the Lambs the lead (1-0, 15 mins)
Singh denied Bickerstaff again on 18 with a one handed flick over the bar following a good strike from the edge of the area after a corner on the left fell invitingly for him.
Tamworth enjoyed the majority of the play until around the 30th minute when Galliford stole into the box on the right and lifted a powerful right footed shot over the target.
Gough tried to lob Johnson from inside the Lambs half and Smith tried his luck from a shorter long range as the minutes ticked away in the first half and in the final few seconds Lait nipped into the box, drilled a shot but neither Verma not Paul Green could convert the loose ball before the half time whistle blew.
HT: TAMWORTH 1 0 HITCHIN TOWN
The Canaries got the game back underway but The Lambs were quickly in possession and Verma span and fired low for Johnson to smother on his line on 46.
Paul Green caught Galliford on the edge of the box 50 and Smith’s freekick from the edge of the D looked to be well struck but a deflection sent it harmlessly back to Singh. Substitute Mongoy drilled the ball low into the box on 51 and Kettle cleared.
Magunda picked up a booking on 57 for pulling back the Hitchin midfielder that tried to go past him but Verma and Magunda delt with the deadball, supplying Waite in the area and he forced Johnson to block his shot.
Hitchin’s sub Mongoy was himself substituted after just 12 minutes after he dropped to the floor and couldn’t continue.
Tamworth made their first change on 69, with Dunkley coming on for Paul Green and for the second time in the game Hitchin played with 10 men after a clash of heads saw Forde go off on 72 for a couple of minutes.
Four minutes after coming on Dunkley put the Lambs 2-0 up.
It came from a back pass to Singh and his ball out found Waite on the left, he threaded it through to Dunkley on the right of the box and finished it with a shot past Johnson. (2-0, 73 mins)
Lait’s ball from the left looked like it would be headed home with consummate ease by Waite on 81 but he wasn’t able to connect fully and the chance of a third goal went begging.
A dinked ball through from Verma found Waite on 86 and he tried a half volley from the right of the box but his shot flew into the Meadow Street terrace and failed to trouble Johnson.
The Lambs made their remaining substitution with a couple of minutes of normal time to go.
Five minutes added time was then shown and Kristian Green forced Johnson into a low save with a good effort on target.
Tamworth forced a corner as the seconds ticked down and kept the ball by the flag for as long as possible until the final whistle blew on another deserved win and fifth clean sheet in a row.
Singh, Green K, Gough, Beswick (c.) (Clement 88), Kettle, Jemson, Green P (Dunkley 69), Verma, Lait, Magunda, Waite (Johnson 88)
Subs: Townrow, Moore
YC: Singh 9, Magunda 57
Hitchin Town Team:
Johnson, Anderson (Mongoy 46, McCaffrey 60), Chesman, Spring, Webb (c.), Ferrell, Cain, Smith, Forde (Fraser 77), Galliford, Bickerstaff
Subs: Charles, Tshikala
Man of the Match: Chris Lait
Referee: Mr. J. Maskrey