Late strike breaks Kenilworth hearts

Kenilworth Town’s Stratford Alliance Division One title hopes look to have all but evaporated after a 2-1 home defeat to second-placed Alveston.

Kenilworth were missing Alex Shaw, Robbie Strain and Jay Holtom but manager Kev Kingham was still able to field a strong squad, with the reserves facing a blank weekend.

Alveston started the game one point better off than their hosts but it was Kenilworth who had the better of the opening exchanges, looking particularly threatening down both flanks.

Town were rewarded when good work in midfield from Joe Graham and Gary Joynes laid the platform for an attack which culminated in Simon Myles beating the Alveston keeper to score the opener and maintain his run of scoring in every game since his elevation to the first team.

Buoyed by their goal, Kenilworth had their best spell of the game but they were unable to give themselves the cushion of a second goal.

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After soaking up the home pressure, Alveston then broke away and scored an equaliser completely against the run of play to take the teams into the break level.

The second half continued in a similar vein to the first, with Kenilworth bossing possession and Alveston looking threatening on the break.

Despite Town’s territorial advantage, it was Alveston who created the clearest chance and Ross Davis was forced to produce a fine full-length save to maintain parity.

However, as the game entered the dying moments, Kenilworth began to run out of ideas and they were punished by a quick counter which led to Alveston’s winner.

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Although disappointed with the late concession, Kingham said Town only had themselves to blame for the defeat.

“We put a lot of pressure on Alveston but couldn’t score,” said Kingham. “After Ross Davis made a great save from a header, with minutes to go a weak crossfield ball turned into an Alveston attack that we failed to clear and they scored.

“It’s a real shame to lose a game in the last few minutes because of our own errors. I hope we learn from it.”

The defeat leaves Kenilworth needing to rely on the top two slipping up and them winning their remaining games to have a realistic chance of winning the league, but Kingham is refusing to give up hope until the title is mathematically beyond them.

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“We will keep pushing for the remaining games and hope the top two slip up as it out of our hands,” added Kingham.

“We now need to focus on the cups. We travel to Cubbington Albion in the RM Smith Cup tomorrow and will be looking to get in to the next round of that.”

 Kenilworth Town’s ladies threw away a 2-0 half-time lead to lose 4-2 to Atherstone.

Alex Shilton scored both of the Town goals.