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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Workington Reds end season in winning style

Workington Reds 3 Hinckley United 1: A beautiful strike by Jonny Blake helped Workington Reds to an end-of-season win over Hinckley United.

Lee Andrews photo
Lee Andrews

The young midfielder opened the scoring on 10 minutes when he flicked the ball over keeper Ian Deakin to notch his first goal for the club.

Blake then used the outside of his right boot to ease the ball into the top corner, which set Workington up for a 3-1 win.

Boss Darren Edmondson was forced to shuffle his pack with Kyle May missing with an infection, Anthony Wright still out with concussion and long-term absentees Phil McLuckie and Gari Rowntree a long way from a first team recall.

His makeshift defence saw skipper David Hewson drop to right back with Steven Swinglehurst partnering Lee Andrews in the centre and Andy Langford on the left.

Despite playing few games together, Swinglehurst and Andrews were colossal at the back, mopping up most things that the Hinckley strike force had to offer.

Youngsters Blake, Adam Main and Mark Sloan were also given a chance to shine in the season finale and took the chance with some neat passing moves.

Workington started the game brightly and within seven minutes should have taken the lead.

Jonny Wright beat Deakin to a loose ball but after rounding the keeper, lacked composure and Gareth Arnison failed to follow up.

Reds were turning the screw and Main was next to misfire when he blazed mover from 20 yards before Blake put the hosts in front.

Latching on to Wright’s ball, the tricky midfielder stroked the ball in from 15 yards to open his account in a red shirt.

Neither side went into the game with thoughts of sun, sand and sea and the visitors almost levelled five minutes later.

A long throw by James Reid set up the impressive Gary Ricketts, who allowed the ball to drop over his shoulder before volleying at Aaran Taylor’s goal.

The big shot stopper pulled off a sensational one-handed save to tip Ricketts’ fierce shot over the bar.

The equally impressive Andre Gray then went close on 38 minutes but he dragged wide from a tight angle after being played in by Jermaine Clarke.

Workington had chances to extend their lead in the second half but Arnison was guilty of failing to convert.

Played through one-on-one by a clever flick from Sloan, he had an age to pick his spot.

Unfortunately he delayed too long and a covering defender was able to get back and clear the danger.

Workington’s top two Wright and Arnison were caught offside too many times but the one time they did run the line perfectly Wright saw his shot saved by Deakin.

Sloan’s drive from 20 yards was straight at Deakin on the hour-mark before Arnison’s 45-yard effort went wide with the keeper out of position.

Workington took Hinckley apart at will but their lack of conviction in front of goal was becoming a problem.

Arnison was again through with just the keeper to beat on 70 minutes but his effort was saved with Wright free in the middle.

The second goal finally came on 76 minutes when Wright’s delightful cross into the box found Vipond, who took the ball down in the middle of two defenders, before sweeping past Deakin into the net.

Reds went three up with seven minutes to go thanks to Arnison’s sublime finish from a tight angle.

Wright was again involved, playing in his strike partner to convert.

Hinckley, who were outplayed, out-passed and out-scored finally found a way past Taylor on 87 minutes with Gray jinking past Langford before striking into the far corner.



Workington Reds: Taylor, Langford, Swinglehurst, Blake, Andrews, Main (Rudd 74), Vipond, Hewson, Wright, Arnison, Sloan (Murray-Jones 83).

Attendance: 336

Referee: M Salisbury (Preston)

Star man: Lee Andrews was outstanding at the back winning every header, tackle and bossing the game. His experience was invaluable for Steven Swinglehurst, who grew in confidence throughout.



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