Prestwich Heys 2-1 Cheadle Town

Another frustrating 90 minutes. Another defeat by the odd goal.

A match of baffling juxtaposition. Not that many absolute clear-cut chances on record but the feeling that we did enough to come away from Adie Moran Park with a result. Equally frustrating was the fact that John McIlwaine had relatively little to do except pick the ball out of his net twice.

We started brightly and were one up after just six minutes.

Matthew Todd tried his luck from range with his stinging drive cannoning off the underside of the crossbar; first to react to the loose ball was Mike Sherrington who nodded home.

We then saw plenty of the ball in the opening half-hour and perhaps should have gone further ahead; if only somebody would have stuck their legs out to the couple of crosses that were zipped across the Prestwich goalmouth in this period.

After being troubled by no more than a few easy crosses to catch, John McIlwaine was beaten for the first time on 36 minutes when Jacob Wood was at the far post to head home from a corner.

We were gifted a great opportunity to perhaps retake the lead just before half-time but the poor clearance from the Heys keeper wasn't capitalised upon, and in our hesitancy the ball was cleared to safety.

Five minutes into the restart Heys repeated the medicine to take the lead, Shaun Johnson this time up to meet a corner with a header.

From that point onwards any decent chances came the way of Cheadle.

Rick Whyatt steamed through the Heys back line on 55 minutes only to fire his effort over the bar, Thab Magida met a right-wing cross with a firm header on 77 minutes but also put it over with Mike Sherrington then nipping in to beat the keeper to a through ball, only for his poke over to refuse to drop into the net.

With five minutes remaining Mike Sherrington then had a glorious chance to level matters. He latched onto a well-timed through-pass from Magida and bore down on goal. In his attempt to round the keeper the angle on goal became more difficult and his shot was side-netted.

Six matches to go. With struggling AFC Blackpool at home this Saturday it's perhaps the ideal opportunity to arrest this run of defeats and give the tail-end of this season a bit of shine.

Best of luck to Prestwich Heys in their bid for the play-offs. The 3 points they picked up last night certainly keeps them in the hunt in what is proving to be an intriguing race for the top six places.

TEAM: McIlwaine, Todd, Dunn, Russell, Tongue, Pearson, Hincks (Banda), Blackwell (Webb), Whyatt, M Sherrington, C Sherrington (Magida). SUBS: Smith (gk), Webb, Banda, Magida, Pickering.