FOOTBALL - Brakes beat rivals Banbury to end visitors unbeaten start - The Leamington Observer

FOOTBALL - Brakes beat rivals Banbury to end visitors unbeaten start

Leamington Editorial 30th Aug, 2022   0

LOUIS Hall scored the only goal as Leamington ended local rivals Banbury United’s unbeaten start to the season with a 1-0 win at the Your Co-Op Community Stadium.

Hall struck the decisive blow on the stroke of half time with a towering header to claim the bragging rights for the Barkes on bank holiday Monday.

That came after Leamington became the first team to take points off of King’s Lynn Town as Dan Turner rescued a point in the second half of a 1-1 draw at the Walks Stadium.

The results leave Leamington in ninth place in the National League North table having just played the division’s top two sides.

And Leamington were on top for much of the first period in their derby clash with Banbury as Jack Lane headed wide from a free-kick before Kieran Cook’s shot was deflected behind.

The hosts eventually made the breakthrough on 45 minutes when Hall powered home Dan Meredith’s cross from the right into the far corner having started the move with an interception at the other end.

Banbury improved after the break as the newly-promoted side threatened Callum Hawkins’ goal on several occasions to no avail.

And Turner almost doubled Leamington’s lead with a low effort that bobbled just wide of the post before Hawkins made a superb save to keep out substitute Harry Parsons’ shot.

Leamington had chances to extend their advantage as Cook sent a bicycle kick over the bar before Simeon Maye struck wide from 20-yards out.

Tensions boiled over briefly when Devon Kelly-Evans and Jay Williams landed in a heap which sparked a melee between the players as Leamington held on to claim the derby day spoils.

That win followed an impressive draw away at leaders King’s Lynn who previously boasted a perfect record from their opening four matches.

King’s Lynn were relegated from the National League last season and missed a glut of chances to take the points with Gold Omotayo the first to be wasteful in front of goal when he headed down into the ground and inches over the bar from close range.

However, Omotayo made up for the miss when his header set up Theo Widdrington for the opener on 34 minutes who stabbed home from a few yards out.

Former Coventry City striker Jordan Ponticelli caused the Brakes problems all afternoon and headed inches over before the break and was then kept out by a fantastic save from Hawkins at the start of the second period.

And Ponticelli was thwarted by another fine Hawkins save later in the half before Omotayo clipped the outside of the far post with a header from the resulting corner.

Chances continued to come and go for the home side as Omotayo sent another free header the wrong side of the post before substitute Josh Barrett skimmed the post.

And Leamington took their chance when it came as Turner controlled a low cross from the right before spinning his man and firing into the bottom corner on 74 minutes.

The Brakes almost snatched an unlikely winner soon after when Adam Walker drove a shot wide having exchanged passes with Cook.

King’s Lynn almost won the game at the death only for Hawkins to save his best stop until last as he kept out substitute Ben Stephens’s effort with an outstretched leg.

Leamington are next in action at home to Bradford Park Avenue on Saturday, September 3 with kick-off at 3pm at the Your Co-Op Community Stadium.

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