Oswestry Town 2-3 Cheadle Town


Three points, yes, but fingernails well-and-truly chewed down to the quick as we willfully allowed our hosts a foothold.

For 65 minutes we were well in control and good value for our 3-0 lead, but as soon as Rick Whyatt had scored that third we had stopped doing the stuff that had served us so well and got us into this position in the first place.

A bright opening by us saw Chris Sherrington test the keeper early on and put a free-kick just over.

On the 12th minute we should have opened our account. Great running by Mike Sherrington down the right saw him slot Rick Whyatt in on goal but to no avail.

Two minutes later Rick made amends, albeit with some fortune; picking the ball up on the edge of the area he went for power, with the shot taking a wicked deflection off an Oswestry defender, wrong-footing the keeper and spinning into the opposite corner of the net.

On 21 minutes Danny Whiting was called into action as he did well to palm away a well-struck long-range effort before we went straight down the other end and extended our lead.

It was the Mike Sherrington/Rick Whyatt combination working again, with Rick feeding Mike in down the right this time for a cool finish into the far corner.

Oswestry had evidently received the proverbial rocket up their rear ends at half-time as they came out with purpose in the second half and were arguably the better side for the final 45 minutes.

Their first chance came six minutes in when a cross in from the left found their player in space in the area, only for him to lash it over the bar.

Danny Whiting was forced into another good stop just after the hour mark before sending the ball down the other end where we would extend our lead even further.

On the edge of the box once more, Rick Whyatt turned inside and out before unleashing a left-footer that didn't need any deflection to help it on its way this time.

And that should have been that. Feet up. Game won.

But no. Two minutes later a poor header out of our defence fell straight to Oswestry's Farleigh who belted home from the edge of the area.

We simply couldn't keep hold of the ball from this point onwards and found ourselves having to fend off repeated waves of Oswestry attack, with Danny Whiting on-hand to rescue us again on 79 minutes with a good stop.

We crafted ourselves a chance to wrap it up once and for all with two minutes to go when George Clarey was through on goal but a moment of hesitancy meant the opportunity was gone.

In the blink of an eye the ball was sent up the other end where Tinsley's turn-and-shot from close range at the near post ensured a very nervous finish and one that would have been even more disastrous for us had Danny Whiting not come out bravely to clear a dangerous cross deep into stoppage time.

Onwards we go and thick-and-fast the fixtures come. A strong-looking Prestwich Heys are the next to visit Park Road this Wednesday evening....

TEAM: Whiting, Dunn, Fleming, Wood (Russell), Brocklehurst, Shaw, Ambrose (Clarey), Hincks, M Sherrington, Whyatt (Delaney), C Sherrington. SUBS: Piggott (gk), Clarey, Delaney, Russell.