Crucial win sets up Clay Cross for title crunch match

The short trip to Rowsley proved a giant step in their title quest for Clay Cross Town as they beat their rivals 2-1.

Sunday, 26th January 2020, 9:16 pm
Updated Tuesday, 28th January 2020, 3:26 pm
Josh Parfitt, who scored one of Clay Cross's goals in their 2-1 win.

A midweek win for tabletopping Sherwood Colliery Reserves had left Clay Cross four points behind them in the Central Midlands League’s South Division.

So their success at Rowsley proved crucial and set up the Millers nicely for this Saturday’s crunch clash at home to Sherwood.

They took up the initiative from the outset, descending on the home defenders in a wave of attacks, and they not only scored three goals, they also hit the woodwork no fewer than five times.

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Mind you, it was Rowsley who took the lead when Jack Bradbury broke free of the Millers’ defence and unleashed a dipping shot that beat ‘keeper Ryan Hopkins at his far post.

Clay Cross had to wait until five minutes into the second half for their equaliser as Josh Parfitt headed home from six yards.

And with the impressive Noah Evans catching the eye, they had to withstand a further threat from Rowsley, surviving a goalline scrimmage at one stage.

However, they were always creating chances, with only the bar or post saving home goalkeeper Matt Rhodes, and they finally got their noses in front 11 minutes from time. Josh Scully curled in a corner that deceived most of the jostling defenders and found its way to the back post, where Grant Mitchell fired home the winning goal.

Rowsley’s last throw of the dice was thwarted when defender Aaron O’​​​​​​​Neill received a red card in the dying moments.