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Hayle 6 Foxhole 1

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Hayle 6 Foxhole 1

Saturday 12th December 2009

Other than a brief spell at the start of the second half when the game was already lost, Foxhole were always inferior to impressive opponents who barely had to break sweat to race into a commanding lead down the slope. With the team sadly deficient in vital areas like pace, energy and creativity, the Foxes are looking ever-more reliant on set-pieces by the week, and consequently rarely threatened a home defence well-marshalled by Wayne Quinn, while Rowe, the best hope of rousing a cheer from the four of us who bothered to travel only to witness another mauling, found centre-half Russell a particularly tough nut to crack. The cause was not helped by the unavailability of both Ansell and Pinhammer, while Bullock's return appears to be over after just two matches, so we were again left to squint wistfully at any rays of dim light emanating from an increasingly long and dark tunnel.

Shortly after Wolstencroft had rattled the bar, Hayle took a twelfth-minute lead through Shiels' penalty, referee Knowles spotting a push on Stephens. Eight minutes later Pugliese doubled the advantage, his drive creeping in at the near-post, and, although Rowe fired an effort wide, Hayle were to seal the points on 28: Magee's header from Wayne Quinn's corner was parried, only for the ball to squirm over the line, possibly off Greenaway. Holland did his best to keep the score respectable with two fine saves from Wolstencroft, but was powerless to prevent the unmarked Shiels from nodding the fourth six minutes before the break. After a half of almost constant pressure it could have been even worse as Magee went close with a late free-kick, but at least the interval pasty was agreeable enough as the heat of the sun diminshed.

With nothing to lose, Foxhole at last piled forward on the restart. Meens' header was cleared off the line by Laity, Cheal denied Mackellar from a dead-ball by Kenny, who then centred for Hazeldine to come within inches of converting. Hayle were temporarily rattled, and Dann was perhaps lucky only to be cautioned for a terrible tackle on Nicholls that was out of keeping with the rest of the game. Following a lengthy stoppage, Nicholls was stretchered off; within seconds Rowe had nodded Kenny's free-kick against a post, Adam Holland reacting quickly to tap home the rebound. A third of the game still remained at this point, and had Holland immediately added a second from close range after emergency striker Mackellar had headed back Kenny's corner, Foxhole may have staged an unlikely recovery. Instead, the home team regrouped and resumed control, Shiels' fierce shot being brilliantly tipped over before Stephens ran on to Laity's pass to restore the four-goal difference on 71.

While Rowe and Greenaway may each have netted with greater composure, the fresh energy levels inspired by a trio of home substitutions ensured Hayle safely saw out time without further alarm, and they were to complete the scoring seconds from the end when Stevens, one of those replacements, volleyed into the corner from six yards to round off a convincing victory.

Foxhole (4-4-2): Ryan Holland; Daniel Meens, Dexter Lawrence, Adam Holland, Nick Carpenter; Sam Kenny, Kelvin Greenaway, Lee Hazeldine, Tony Mackellar; Liam Nicholls (sub. Bobbylee Johns), Mark Rowe.

Hayle (4-4-2): Dave Cheal; Matt Laity (sub. Simon Stevens), Tom Dann, Wayne Quinn, Chris Russell; Ryan Stephens, Dan Magee, Nick Pugliese, Liam Quinn (sub. Scott Jose); Matt Shiels, Chris Wolstencroft (sub. Joe Day).

Referee: Mr Kevin Knowles (Mabe Burnthouse).

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