Gary Wilson playing against Kidlington
Chippy caught Kidlington on the wrong day, with the visitors including Jermaine McSporran, who played for Chester City in the Championship League Two just three weeks ago, in their line up to maintain fitness as he looks for another professional club. It was he who proved the difference between the side after Chippy had fought back valiantly from falling behind to lead 2-1 entering the last quarter of the game, eventually going down to a 3-2 defeat.
The kick off was delayed until 3.20pm as the referee and one of his assistants were late arriving due to heavy traffic, Chippy chairman Sean Robson having to run the line for the first half an hour. When proceedings eventually got underway Kiddy were quickly into their stride and had an early penalty shout when Keiran Daviss shot struck the hand of Nathan Hailey, but the referee deemed it ball to hand and waved play on, much to the relief of the home crowd. Jerry Karpal then hit a looping 30-yard shot that was turned over the bar by Chippys Mark Harris. Kiddy took the lead just after the hour mark when Davis smartly volleyed home an acrobatic effort from 25 yards which flw into the top corner. Town gradually eased themselves into the game and when Cameron Busby beat Tai Thomas out wide and delivered an excellent cross onto the head of Steve Knight. Knight headed wide of the target when he should have done better. Dave Skipp then turned his man and struck a fine effort which Chris Brain, returning to his former club, made a fine save from. Up the other end McSporran then beat his man, turned and hit a shot, which whistled past the near post. Busby was having a raging battle wth Lee Hewlett throughout the half, and when he overstepped the mark he received a caution. Minutes later Hewlett returned the compliment and was also booked, when the two clashed again just seconds later, Busby having tripped Hewlett, referee Christie had seen enough and showed him the red, and Chippy were down to ten men just moments before the interval, when a stern warning and with the half time break to cool the players down may have been a wiser option. H.T. 0 1Referee Christie was soon into the action in the second half when Skipps dummy took him past Hewlett, who clipped him as he sped past him, a second yellow again seemed harsh, but it meant the game was back in the balance with both sides now down to ten men, From the resultant free kick Tim Jenkins forced a good save from Brain. Chippy were dominant now and were piling on the pressure and it was no surprise when the equalizer arrived, a Steve Knight corner was cleared back into his path, and he fizzed a sumptuous cross back into the danger zone, and Steve Olczaks bullet diving header brought the scores level. Jenkins was proving very influential now with more room to manoeuvre in, and he slotted in Knight, whos shot was well parried by Brain. The pressure was relentless at this stage though and when Knights deep cross reached Gary Wilson at the far post, he took a touch, came inside his man, and curled a sweet effort inside the far post to inch The Magpies in front. Instead of continuing the pressure, Chippy sat back a little however, and were dealt a hammer blow when Haisley, who had been man marking McSporran with good success, picked up an injury and Ian Ford was forced into a re-shuffle. Within minutes Town were caught out, a long deep ball over the centre halves gave McSporran something to chase, and his electric pace got him to the ball before the onrushing keeper Harris, McSporran went down and it was a penalty. Ben Moses stepped up and blasted the ball home for the equalizer. The game had turned full tilt now, and it was Kiddy firmly in the ascendancy, and they punished a flat footed Chippy defence again, when another long ball put McSporran in a foot race with Craig Holman, and there was only going to be one winner, the ex-Wycombe Wanderers man took a touch and thumped the ball past Harris to pinch the game for the visitors. A game that swung both ways, with Kiddy dominating the first half hour and last twenty minutes, and Chippy on top at the other times. Both teams can take plenty of credit and look at the improvement and giant strides both clubs have made since last season.
TEAM: Mark Harris 7, Gary Morrison 6 (Andy Harris 74/7), Wes Proverbs 6, Steve Olczak 7 (Wayne Vincent 88), Nathan Haisley 9*, Tim Jenkins 7, Craig Holman 6, Steve Knight 7 (Alex Volosanovs 79/7), Gary Wilson 7, Dave Skipp 7, Cameron Busby 5