Seven heaven! Moles hold league leaders to extend run

Aylesbury FC held Rugby to a 0-0 draw
Aylesbury FC held Rugby to a 0-0 draw
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Before the game fans and management would have quite happily taken a point from this tough test against Southern League Division One leaders Rugby Town and that’s what they got after a 0-0 draw.

The task was made all the more difficult with the squad decimated by injuries to Ollie Burgess and long term casualty Tom Cutts, illness effecting Kevin Mealor and Steve Perkins and the unavailability of Simon Sweeney.

So again Steve Bateman had to juggle the pack, Ollie Hogg came in at right back, the versatile Adam Logie partnered Ben Stevens at the heart of the defence with Connor Baker returning at left back.

FC must have felt it was going to be a long night as Rugby were very quick out of the blocks dominating the first ten minutes with a slick passing game on a difficult, rutted surface. Not surprisingly Rugby had the first chance when a mistake by Ben Stevens let in Kolodynski who shot wide from the edge of the box. That though, really was the last real chance that the prolific striker had as the immense Central defensive partnership of Stevens and Logie marshalled the Valley’s strike force, limiting then to rare half chances.

Aylesbury started to get back into the game as the half progressed, with every player putting in a shift, shutting Rugby down at every opportunity and not allowing them to play or allowing chances to be created. After 20 minutes Brian Haule slipped a ball through to Danny Burnell but keeper Cooper cleared to safety. Haule and Burnell continued to work together well through the first half with good interplay and creating half chances but nothing clear cut.

Aylesbury came out in the second half and this time started the quicker of the two sides and had early chances from Sam Bateman who fired over and from Brian Haule who’s glancing header from a Connor Baker shot just went wide of the goal.

Aylesbury’s confidence was growing and Rugby were becoming edgy as they needed the 3 points to keep clear at the top of the League. Keeper Niall Cooper got the ball caught at his feet just outside the area, Brian Haule challenged but just couldn’t get a shot away to make the keeper pay for the error.

Then with four minutes to go Aylesbury should have wrapped up all three points, Danny Burnell on the edge of the box shielded the ball well, turned and passed across the eighteen yard line into Bradley Wadkins, who with the ball on his left foot and the goal gaping smashed the ball past the post when scoring looked easier. That was the last chance of an enthralling game as the Moles extend their unbeaten run to seven.

A great all round team performance with excellent performances from all over the pitch but the man of the match today in central defence was Adam Logie.