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Hitchin Town 0 Corby Town 2

Saturday, January 25 2014

Two second half Corby goals settled a game that was played in occasionally dramatic conditions, and made it seven league games without a win for the Canaries.

It was a bizarre afternoon, with a contingent from Everton watching part of the game and creating a noisy atmosphere that got somewhat out-of-hand.

Hitchin had an early chance when Kim Forsythe's shot was deflected but saved by Corby goalkeeper Paul Walker. Shortly afterwards, Corby joint manager Tommy Wright went close with a powerful header from Sam Ives' cross.

Midway through the first half, Hitchin started to gain the upper hand and Matt Lench forced Walker into a diving save after went past a defender and sent in a low shot that was pushed for a corner. Seconds later, defender Dan Webb just failed to get his shot in at the far post when the Corby defence failed to clear the ball.

Just before the break, Walker was almost beaten when Forysthe met Lewis Rolfe's cross and the ball landed on the roof of the net.

The second half was only six minutes old when torrential rain, hail and thunder produced apocalyptic conditions that forced the referee to take the teams off for five minutes. When play resumed, the players had to contend with a waterlogged pitch that reduced the game to something of a lottery. Corby adapted better to the tricky surface.

The Northants side took the lead after 59 minutes. Wright was brought down and Aman Verma's low free kick skidded past Hitchin goalkeeper Tahj Bell, despite the presence of a wall.

Verma turned provider in the 68th minute, sending over a corner that was headed home at the far post by Chris Carruthers to put Corby two ahead.

Hitchin were given a lifeline when Walker was red-carded for handballing outside the area. Substitute goalkeeper Josh Carpenter was almost beaten with the resulting free kick, but Charlie Smith's effort rebounded off the upright. And in the final stages, another Smith drive was well saved by Carpenter.

Hitchin Town: Bell, Rolfe (King 78), Bickerstaff, Barker, Webb, Pearson, Lench, Donnelly, Smith, Forsythe (Martin 57), Jones (Gregson 54)

Corby Town: Walker, Kalern, Jellyman, Malone, Carruthers, McGowan, Hendrie, Rooney (Carpenter 76), Wright, Verma, Ives

Report by Neil Jensen

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