Tuesday 9th October 2012 ko 19.45
Southern League Central Division
RUGBY TOWN 2 (Koriya 12 Palmer 90)
WOODFORD UNITED 0
Ever had one of those evenings when things conspire to trip you up? This was definitely one of those! The original idea was to head south to the Wessex League to watch Hayling, but that called off before I left work (Thanks Splodge for letting me know!), so I headed north to watch Saffron Dynamo, in the Leicestershire Senior League. That, it transpired got postponed because the Cosby-based side didn’t fancy playing Desford twice in 3 days, so I was faced with a choice, do a revisit or head for home.
A call from Graeme helped no end with my options, so I parked up in Butlin Road with a couple of minutes to spare. It was about a decade earlier that I’d first visited, when the club were mid-way though their transformation from Valley Sports, to VS Rugby, to Rugby United. Nowadays its Town following the merger with the United Counties League side, and Butlin Road remains a magnificent ground, a league ground in waiting, totally out of step with the club’s position, 4 promotions from the supposed promised land.
They were always likely to a take a step in the right direction this evening as Woodford are having a dreadful time of it. Led by former Birmingham and Yeovil forward Howard Forinton, and featuring former Leamington striker Josh Blake, you’d have expected a lot more than no points from 7 games. It became clear why though, as every first step was a backward one. It gave Rugby a head start every time, and on a different night there could have been a bucket-load of goals.
And for the life of me I don’t understand why there weren’t! The game was so one-sided I placed myself each half towards the end Rugby were attacking, as Woodford had almost no answers, to the obvious frustration of Forinton. But if the Woodford goal was a barrel of fish, for the most part the hundreds of bullets fired, missed. Fazel Koriya was there to finish off a neat through ball in the twelfth minute, but then a mixture of poor finishing, over-passing, and inspired goalkeeping from Jamie Brassington kept the game within reach of the beleaguered visitors.
Every time you thought “They’ve got to score with this,” Rugby found another way to miss, and on the odd occasion Woodford ventured forward, you wondered if they could steal the most unlikely of points. They didn’t, as with yours truly already moving towards the exit, an reverse pass from Seb Lake-Gaskin found subsitute Steve Palmer, and he did the simple thing, stroking home from just inside the box. If only his team-mates had done the same…..