Wednesday 9th November 2022 Central Midlands League Abacus Floodlit Cup First Round MANSFIELD HOSIERY MILLS (2)4 HARWORTH COLLIERY (M)
On what was reported to be the mildest November night on record the home team survived an early lengthy onslaught to break away and take a fifth minute lead through the speedy DANIEL KEENAN who raced down the left past three defenders, drew Jake Wildsmith from his line and neatly slotted the ball across him into the far corner. And the Knitters, who had won five of their last seven games, never looked back. Indeed, it should have been two on eight minutes when Curtis Birchall was played clear but shot wide. Harworth hit back and Aaran Pickersgill’s towering header at a corner flashed narrowly wide before the same player misdirected a defensive header; Mason Laws’ attempted back pass was short and DANIEL KEENAN nipped in for a tap in to make it 2-0. Bayley Lowe brought a good save out of Daniel Hartshorne and his disappointment might have been more keenly felt had a late offside flag not intervened. James Keenan brought a good save out of Wildsmith at the other end before Harworth’s Pickersgill was yellow carded for pulling back James Keenan on 31 minutes and Luke Manlove receiving similar treatment two minutes later for a rash tackle. But these were isolated incidents in a game that was played in great spirit and superbly refereed by Syd Atwal. Mansfield lost Thomas Torrington with a 38th minute injury. He had been instrumental in the middle of the park for them. But substitute Stephan Brown was a more than adequate replacement. Harworth missed a great chance to get back in the game in the minutes leading up to the interval as Hartshorne beat out a fierce George Johnson shot and Bayley Lowe blazed the loose ball over from six yards. Indeed, these minutes leading up to the break were intense. Daniel Keenan tried to lob Wildsmith from around 30 yards and the ball only just cleared the bar; Manlove headed a cross from skipper Tom Suter over the bar when he might have done better; and a curling shot as he cut inside from Daniel Keenan in the end proved easy meat for Wildsmith. Thus ended an exciting and entertaining first half.
Half time Mansfield Hosiery Mills 2 Harworth Colliery 0
Attacking up the slope in the second half Harworth made early efforts to get back into the game. Harry Dunbar got through a packed and well drilled defence only to fire straight at Hartshorne. There was an anxious moment at the other end though when Luke Manlove’s driven low shot was saved on the line by a prostrate Wildsmith and the rebound fell to Daniel Keenan who shot wide across goal. Harworth’s efforts were rewarded in the 57th minute when, after consultation with his assistant, the referee awarded a penalty which BAYLEY LOWE calmly converted. The recovery was given every chance to succeed two minutes later when James Keenan was sent to the Sin Bin for ten minutes for dissent leaving the home side to battle on with ten men. And it was whilst they were reduced in numbers that the Knitters restored their two goal advantage, two goal Daniel Keenan this time turning provider to supply the perfect cross for substitute ELLIOTT NUNN to head in on 69 minutes. The game looked to be running out quite comfortably for the Sutton-in-Ashfield side until what appeared to be an attempted cross from MATTHEW GAINS saw the ball bounce a couple of times in front of goal, beat the diving Hartshorne, hit the inside of a post and nestle into the back of the net. Could this entertaining game yet go to penalties? No fear! No more than a few seconds to go of the original ninety when Nunn made a superb run along the goal line from the right to clip the ball across goal for DANIEL KEENAN to tap into the net and complete a deserved hat trick.