19th Sep, 2020

Key encounter awaits Robins in the battle for play-offs

Evesham Editorial 6th Feb, 2020

EVESHAM United’s Southern League Division One South play-off hopes face a potentially pivotal test this weekend when the Robins host fellow hopefuls Melksham Town.

Carl Abbott’s United returned to winning ways on Saturday with a thrilling 5-3 success at Mangotsfield United but, with just 13 matches remaining, they remain three places and five points below this weekend’s fifth-placed visitors from Wiltshire, having played one game more.

The proverbial six-pointer is therefore on the cards and Evesham will have a point to prove having suffered a 6-0 humbling at home to Southern Premier Central title-chasers Bromsgrove Sporting in the Worcestershire Senior Cup semi-final on Monday.

It was all a far cry from two days earlier when Evesham were all smiles after winning an eight-goal thriller in Bristol to net their first win of 2020.

Lee Chilton put the visitors in front when he glanced a goalbound shot into the net and, after a number of opportunities had gone begging, Evesham deservedly doubled their lead when Danny Bragoli’s cross was tapped home from close range by loanee Jamie Lucas.

In the second half Mangotsfield opened their account when James Ollis scored with a header from close range, but substitute Matt Dodd made an immediate impact with a fantastic cross which was thumped home by Paul Sullivan on the volley to make it 3-1 on 58 minutes.

The hosts had renewed hope again just a few minutes later through a sloppy own goal from keeper Lochie Robertson, who could not gather a corner and the ball bobbled over the line.

The home side then levelled on 70 minutes when a defensive mix-up allowed Ollis to grab his second goal of the game but, with a quarter of an hour to go, the impressive Dodd crossed from the left and Calvin Dinsley fired a fierce drive into the net from 15 yards.

Maximum points were secured in the first minute of stoppage time when Dodd netted with a curling effort into the top corner.

Meanwhile, United youth players Will Holland and Henry McMahon have signed first team papers for the club having progressed through from the junior ranks.

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