Brakes’ play-off hopes shot down by Supermarine


ANY Brakes fans not at the New Windmill on Tuesday night - and there were many - might listen to the descriptions of all four goals and think they had missed a classic.

However, the quality finishes, all different in their make-up but equally clinical in their execution, failed to light up a dour encounter which left Brakes’ play-off hopes hanging by a thread.

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Nick Stanley returned to New Windmill, where he spent a brief spell towards the end of last season, and gave the hosts an early scare with a speculative cross from the left which struck the far post and bounced away to safety.

Brakes created little of note in the early exchanges, but their first incisive move in the 19th minute led to Lee Chilton’s second goal in as many games.

One-touch passing between David Kolodynski, Jacob Blyth and Chilton set the left-winger free inside the box and he gave visiting keeper Ashley Harrison no chance with a confident finish into the roof of the net.

With Swindon having shipped six in their previous outing, it should have been the cue for Brakes to go for the jugular. However, too many hopeful balls were punted forward, with Craig Owen and Alex Taylor virtual bystanders as the home side cut out the midfield in search of a killer pass.

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Swindon were quite content to lump the ball forward when they did gain possession, but gave notice of their threat in the 30th minute when Ashley Edenborough drove into the box and saw his shot deflected wide.

Five minutes later they silenced the home fans with an equaliser, Max Etheridge ghosting in between two defenders to neatly flick the ball into the far corner after a cross from the left.

Parity lasted barely four minutes, with Brakes going back in front with a goal which owed much to a patient build-up across the back.

The home side probed down the right, but then switched play to Stephan Morley, who had drifted infield from the left flank. There seemed little on, but Morley stepped forward and unleashed a wickedly dipping drive from 35 yards which appeared to deceive Harrison and went in off the post.

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Brakes pressed for a third after the break and, with Swindon struggling to cope with the pace of Kolodynski, the striker twice worked his way into the box only for Harrison to have correctly worked out his angles.

In between, Liam Daly nodded a header wide, while in the 73rd minute, Taylor dragged a shot past the post after Blyth had chested off a pass from substitute Michael Tuohy.

A bullet header from Blyth had supporters expecting the net to bulge, but the effort was narrowly off-target and Brakes were made to pay when Swindon’s next attack was illegally halted.

Nathan Vaughan had not had a save to make in the second half, but he could do nothing about Ben Wells’ exquisite free-kick, which bounced off the crossbar and over the line.

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Daly put another far-post header wide as Brakes looked to take the lead for a third time, but their cause was hampered by a ligament injury to Blyth which forced the teenager off with three minutes remaining.

Tuohy spurned Leamington’s final chance when his heavy touch took him away from goal and as the hosts’ and home fans’ frustrations grew, he and James Mace were both booked for dissent.

Brakes: Nathan Vaughan, James Mace, Stephan Morley, Neil Barnfield, Jamie Hood, Liam Daly, Alex Taylor, Craig Owen, Jacob Blyth (James Husband, 86), David Kolodynski (Michael Tuohy, 67), Lee Chilton. Subs not used: Asa Charlton, Ian King, Jamie Sheldon.

Swindon: Ashley Harrison, Jamie Prior, Tom Cole, Dave Bampton, Kyle Lapham, Gary Horgan, Ben Wells, Sam Morris, Ashley Edenborough, Max Etheridge, Nick Stanley. Subs not used: Harry Etheridge, Matt Robinson, Jon Beedon, Bradley Gray, Danny Allen.