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HELLENIC LEAGUE: Fairford outclass New College
FAIRFORD got their Division One West campaign back on track with a 3-0 victory over New College at the Webb’s Wood Stadium.
Paul Braithwaite’s side lost 2-1 to Lydney on Tuesday but were comfortably the better outfit against a College team that have enjoyed a positive start to the season.
Fairford had a late injury and absence crisis to contend with and were forced to bring back facial injury victim Ash Taylor ahead of schedule, with the defender unable to head the ball.
Nevertheless, the Gloucestershire outfit got off to a good start midway through the first half when Dan Bailey struck home a stylish free kick.
Striker Nathan Gambling doubled the lead soon after when he stabbed home Dan Drewitt’s cross from close range.
After the break College were given a golden opportunity to equalise from the spot, but Joey Hiscock saw his penalty saved by keeper Ben Mitchell.
Jack Allan then grabbed his second goal in as many games and Fairford saw out the remaining 35 minutes to take all three points.
Fairford boss Paul Braithwaite felt his side merited their victory and was pleased with how his players had performed.
“It was a deserved three points and could have been a couple more if I’m honest,” said Braithwaite.
“At times we were unselfish around the box when we could have hit one or two, but I think overall no one could argue.
“We did the little things right and ensured that we got the result that we needed.”
College manager Rob Hopkins had no complaints with the result and told the Advertiser that Fairford were a class act.
“I said before the weekend that they would be top two in the league and nothing has happened to change that opinion,” said Hopkins.
“They were better than us in key departments and were a lot more clinical in front of goal.
“It would have been nice if we’d been a bit more competitive but it wasn’t to be.”
One unsavoury incident saw College youngster Harry Myles stamped on - unnoticed by the match officials - with the Fairford player immediately substituted by Braithwaite.
“It was great testament to Paul that he took him off straight away and he apologised in the bar afterwards,” added Hopkins.
Elsewhere in the division, Purton continued their fine start to the season with a 1-0 win at Easington, the winner coming from Joe Dorey just after the break.
Purton have also been boosted by the signing of former player Leigh Brown from local rivals Shrivenham.
Malmesbury secured their second victory in four league games with a 4-2 win at North Leigh reserves.
Declan Sheppard put the hosts in front early on but Scott Chilcott replied almost immediately.
Chilcott registered again midway through the first half, but Alfie Saunders replied to make it 2-2 at the break.
Vics scored twice in the closing stages of the second period with Adam Whitefield and Mitch Webb securing the visitors three points.
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