Highworth Town 1-3 Winchester City

Winchester 2 Bristol Manor Farm 0

on Sun 12 Jan

A great team performance enabled Winchester City to beat Bristol Manor Farm and consolidate their third position in the table. Winchester have now recorded victories against 12 of the other 19 teams in their division and 5 of the other 7 they have recorded victories against in the previous season.

It was Winchester's first ever win against Bristol Manor Farm having lost 4 and drawn 1 of the previous 5 games between the clubs, despite having scored first in three of these losses. Bristol Manor Farm went into this match just below mid-table, but they enjoyed a good F A Cup run and recently signed striker Alan Griffin who was until recently at Cirencester Town where last season him and Ben Whitehead were a very dangerous strike force and Alan's elder brother Charlie was until recently Cirencester manager. The Bristol Manor Farm team also contained players such as Jordan Metters who had done well against Winchester in the past.

Winchester had originally only intended to make one change to the starting line-up from Saturday's game with Danny King returning from injury replacing Joe Hayward who dropped to the bench.
However forb the second successive match their plans were disrupted by an injury in the warm up with this time Rob Carr being the injured player, with Oli Bailey coming in for him.

Winchester however made an excellent start when in the fifth minute following a cross from Jamie Barron Simba Mlambo provided a great finish with a superb volley. Jamie Barron had an effort deflected for a corner and Keith Emmerson shot wide, while at the other end Jordan Metters forced a save from Ryan Pryce.

Bearing in mind the history of this fixture Winchester were fully aware that one goal was not enough and the second goal duly came in the 16th minute when Ollie Balmer made a great run and when his effort hit the post Oli Bailey was able to follow up and put the ball away. Before half time Luke King had an effort that the Bristol Manor Farm goalkeeper was only just able to turn round the post for a corner, while at the other end Olly Mehew forced a save from Pryce, but Winchester were vey content to go into the interval with a 2-0 lead.

It was expected that Bristol Manor Farm would come at Winchester in the second half to try and get back in the game, but Winchester played excellently as a unit in the game's second period with Keith Emmerson and Kieran Douglas were immense at the back making important interceptions and keeping the dangerous Griffin quiet. In fact probably the nearest the visitors came to scoring in the second half was a deflected shot that went just wide in the last of five additional minutes at the end of the game. Winchester though came the closest to scoring in the second half with Ollie Bamer forcing a good save from Andrew Collings and from another free kick Douglass headed fractionally wide.

The wind was a factor in the game, but it has to be said that Winchester coped with the conditions better than their opponents and deserved the three points.

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